Woman’s home de­stroyed

The Northland Age - - Local News -

An el­derly Kerik­eri woman lost al­most ev­ery­thing she owned when fire ripped through her home in the early hours of Tuesday morn­ing.

The 88-year-old res­i­dent got out and alerted her neigh­bours, who called 111 at 4.37am. By the time the first Kerik­eri Fire Brigade crew ar­rived 12 min­utes later the Ruru Lane house, down a long right-of-way off In­let Rd, was burn­ing fiercely.

At least four ap­pli­ances and two tankers re­sponded from Kerik­eri, Kawakawa, Pai­hia and Okai­hau.

The woman, a Swiss cit­i­zen who moved to Kerik­eri in 2000 with her late hus­band, was un­hurt, as was her dog.

Fire safety of­fi­cer Gary Beer said the fire was not sus­pi­cious, and noth­ing had been left switched on in the kitchen or left in the drier. He sus­pected an elec­tri­cal fault in the roof cav­ity, and was fo­cus­ing his in­ves­ti­ga­tion on that area.

The house and con­tents were in­sured.

Fire­fight­ers man­aged to re­trieve some of the woman’s per­sonal be­long­ings, and neigh­bours helped re­cover more, in­clud­ing framed pho­tos of her chil­dren, which were cracked and smokedam­aged but still in­tact.

The res­i­dent, whose chil­dren live in Switzer­land, and her dog are cur­rently stay­ing with neigh­bours Barry Sla­bosz and Roslyn Wake­field. Neigh­bours were quick to of­fer her cloth­ing, and in­formed Age Con­cern.

PIC­TURE / PETER DE GRAAF

The Ruru Lane house was dam­aged ex­ten­sively in the early morn­ing blaze.

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