A KIRKBY man says he had a lucky escape after a blaze which destroyed around 90 per cent of his possessions broke out at his home on Friday morning.
Lorry driver Jason Bartle (41) had already left for work when he received a call from his landlord telling him the fire brigade and police were at his house after it had caught fire.
The blaze broke out in the living room of the home on Glenside, Kirkby, at around 6am and started after an overloaded extension plug unit for the TV and stereo system caught fire.
Fire crews were alerted by a neighbour who saw thick smoke pouring from the house windows.
Speaking after returning to the property, devastated Jason told Chad:“If I had not been at work at the time I would not be here now and if reading this will stop people overloading extension plug units then that is good. I will never use another one again.”
“When I first saw the extent of the damage I was devastated,” he said. “It is all smoked damaged, so all my clothes and all the house clothes and the beds - the whole lot. I lost a black panther which I bought in America in 1994 at an antiques fair. I have had it 17 years.
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“I have artwork which I bought in Dubai which are all canvas. I had a lot of things from my travels all over the world which would cost me an absolute fortune to replace. Photos are gone and things that are irreplaceable.”
Following the blaze Jason was told his insurer had told him 90 per cent of his possessions would have to be replaced following the extent of the damage. He Jason has now begun an agonising clean-up operation and says he will have to pick up the shattered pieces of his home in the coming weeks.
“I have to get on now and get things sorted,” he said. “I have a professional cleaner coming in and the next step is to get everything documented. It is going to take me a while but I will get it sorted out.
A Nottinghamshire Fires and Rescue spokesman said: “Electrical fires can start for a range of reasons, varying from faulty appliances and leads, frayed wiring, overloaded sockets and the misuse of equipment, but a few simple checks and precautions can help keep you and your property safe.
“We advise that you turn off and unplug all electrical appliances when you are not using them, except those that are meant to be permanently switched on (like the fridge or DVD recorder), and make sure plugs have the correct fuse for the appliance being used. If in doubt, refer to the manufacturer’s instructions.
“It is important to also use only one plug in each socket and avoid multi-way adapters and overloading electric sockets by using several adapters,”
has spoken of his heart-ache after losing nearly all of his possessions to smoke damage following a fire at his home.