Family left homeless after Christmas tree fire destroyed their home

A family have been left homeless after their Christmas tree caught fire and destroyed their home.

The Jackson family are lucky to be alive after their Christmas tree lights sparked a blaze that completely destroyed their home in Morriston, Swansea.

Nicola Jayne Jackson, 33, was fast asleep with her two daughters Nia, nine, and Eva, six, when the fire broke out.

Her husband Bradley Jackson, 32, was asleep downstairs after falling asleep watching a movie.

Luckily, Nicola woke up when their dog started barking as the smoke and fire spread through their home, reports Wales Online.

"I was in bed as my husband was watching a film – we had been out drinking so he decided to stay downstairs," Nicola said.

"It was our brave amazing dog Bella who woke me up barking, I went downstairs and opened the living room door and black smoke bellowed out. I honestly thought there was no way my husband was OK but I had to get my children out.

"I ran upstairs and to get my daughter but the handle on her door broke and I started panicking even more.

"Luckily she opened the door and I got my other daughter who was sleeping in her underwear and we ran outside."

Throughout all this, Bradley was fast asleep on the sofa and didn’t realise what was going on. When Nicola managed to get the children outside, she ran back in to save her husband.

"I was crying and screaming but I had to go back in even though it was a stupid decision. I ran in and dragged him out from his arm but luckily all our neighbours were outside helping," she said.

"There were neighbours that I don’t even speak to who were helping me and I’m so grateful as I was in a state, the wait for the fire service felt like hours."

Her dog, Bella, ran back inside to hide under a pillow but was brought out by a fireman when they arrived shortly after 11pm.

The family were lucky to get out alive, but their Christmas presents and belongings were destroyed, as was the inside of the house in Morriston, Swansea.

Now her children are asking whether they will still have a Christmas.

"I am absolutely traumatised and still can’t believe what has happened. My children ask me ‘will Santa still visit us?’ and it breaks my heart," she added tearfully.

"This isn’t what Christmas is about and I don’t want my kids thinking that it is. We should be having a normal Christmas like most families, it just breaks my heart."

The family are now staying in a local hotel until they can sort out long term accommodation

Her family and friends have now set up a Justgiving page to ensure the family can still enjoy the festive period.

Nia and Eva, who both attend Morriston Primary school, have been given colouring books and stationary from the school while they aren’t attending.

Nicola added: "I have had so many messages of support, people have bought us clothes and food but I don’t know how to say thank you. I’ve never been in this situation where people are helping me on such a big scale.

"The support has been fantastic from everyone, especially my neighbours and everyone online.

Fire advice for Christmas trees

  • Display your Christmas lights in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions
  • Ensure you buy Christmas lights from a reputable supplier and check they comply with the relevant safety standards
  • Check the fuses are the right type
  • If bulbs blow, replace the lights
  • Don’t leave decorative lights on when you go out or when you go to sleep
  • Don’t let the bulbs touch anything that can burn easily, like paper
  • Don’t overload sockets and extension leads
  • Only use outside leads for outside lights
  • Don’t place candles near a Christmas tree or materials that can catch light easily
  • Don’t attach decorations to lights or heaters as they can burn easily
  • Don’t leave cooking unattended
  • Don’t let Christmas tree light bulbs touch anything that can burn easily, such as paper or fabrics.
  • Check your Christmas lights carry the British Standard sign
  • Always switch Christmas lights off and unplug them before leaving the house or going to bed
  • Test the batteries in your smoke alarm every week. Never remove them
  • Keep candles away from children. Make sure that they are extinguished properly when you leave the room.

"I keep praising my dog Bella and it may sound stupid but she’s so clever and literally saved our lives."

Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service said the fire originated from the Christmas tree. It said firefighters managed to contain the fire to the living room area and extinguished the fire using four breathing apparatus, two hose reel jet and two thermal imaging cameras.

Station manager Richard Felton said: “As people begin to get into the Christmas spirit and decorate their homes and workplaces, we would like to remind the public that the Christmas season brings its own fire risks."

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