Smoke alarms save dad and five kids

Working smoke alarms helped save a father and his five children from a blaze that gutted their home last night.

New Plymouth senior station officer Steve Dombroski said firefighters were called to scene, on Frankley Rd, about 8.50pm and found the house fully alight.

''They have lost all their property, the people who own it,'' Dombroski said.

''Smoke alarms warned the occupants and the father has got his five children out.''

Dombroski said the man put the kids in the van, drove to the end of their long driveway and flashed his lights to signal arriving fire engines.

''But we could see it on the way," Dombroski said.

"He's done everything right getting the children out."

Dombroksi said firefighters spent about four hours putting out the blaze and dampening hot spots.

The fire had spread rapidly throughout the house and though it was still standing the fire had completely gutted the home, Dombroski said.

''We suspect the cause of the fire was combustibles too close to a fire box. It should be a warning to make sure things are well clear of fire boxes,'' he said.

Taranaki Daily News