A MOTHER and her two children had a lucky escape after fire ripped through their house in minutes after being triggered by falling embers in their lounge.
The woman, believed to be in her 30s, managed to grab her two young daughters and flee the blazing house in St Matthews Gardens, St Leonards without serious injury.
Firefighters were called to the four bedroom detached house around 3pm last Friday.
Embers from an unguarded fireplace in the lounge are believed to have triggered the blaze which quickly spread to the first floor.
The mother and her children, believed to be aged three and one, were taken to the Conquest for treatment for smoke inhalation.
The woman had burned her hair as she dashed through the building to get out.
Neighbours said they heard the woman’s screams. Alma Perch said: “I saw the flames coming out of the front of the house and heard the woman’s screams. I saw the woman holding the side of her face with a wet towel - she had singed hair.”
A fire investigation concluded it was an accident. Paul Way, station commanded at Hastings fire station, said: “When we arrived it was an extremely well developed fire. The lady had been burning plastic, rubbish and cardboard in the fireplace. It had spilled out while she was not in the room and there was no fire guard. It only takes seconds for a fire to spread from a jumping ember. She managed to get the kids out safely but it could have been a lot more serious. The property has sustained 100 per cent fire damage on the first and ground floor and has been left uninhabitable.”