Kent

Maidstone family forced out by candle blaze

A family have been forced into temporary accommodation after a fire, started by an unattended candle, severely damaged their Maidstone home.

The blaze broke out in the bedroom of a teenage boy, who was in the Oxford Road house with his sister and a friend on Wednesday.

The fire service said the boy was alerted by a smoke alarm.

They are warning people to make sure candles are properly extinguished and never left unattended.

'Right thing'

Maidstone crew manager Tony Brown said: "[They] did exactly the right thing in getting out of the house and phoning 999.

"The boy told us he had been using candles in his bedroom, which he believed he had put out before going downstairs. As this incident highlights, it is imperative that candles are never left unattended and are always extinguished properly after use."

Firefighters wore breathing apparatus to tackle the blaze in the bedroom and used fans to ventilate the smoke-filled house.

A spokesman said the damage rendered the house uninhabitable, forcing the family to move temporarily elsewhere.

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