Pensioner dead after house fire

IAN CLARKE A man in his 70s was found dead in the bathroom of his Norfolk home after a fierce early morning fire today.Three fire crews from Swaffham, Dereham and Massingham were called to the small semi-detached bungalow which was “well alight” at Necton Road, Little Dunham, near Swaffham, at about 2am.

IAN CLARKE

A man in his 70s was found dead in the bathroom of his Norfolk home after a fierce early morning fire today.

Three fire crews from Swaffham, Dereham and Massingham were called to the small semi-detached bungalow which was “well alight” at Necton Road, Little Dunham, near Swaffham, at about 2am.

Neighbours had tried to rescue the man - who lived alone - but he was overcome by smoke and they could not lift him out. The would-be rescuers also had to get out as they were suffering from the effects of the smoke and they had to be given oxygen at the scene.

The man was found dead by firefighters.

Crews wearing breathing apparatus and using a thermal imaging camera were at the bungalow for nearly four hours.

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Part of the home were badly affected by the fire and the roof was virtually destroyed.

A fire investigation team was today starting a probe into the cause of the blaze and early indications are that it started in a bedroom.

Police said the fire was not being treated as suspicious.

The neighbouring property had to be evacuated.

Fire service spokesman Martin Barsby said: “It was an intense fire. It is a tragedy at any time of the year but at this time it is always more poignant.”

He said anyone concerned about fire safety in their homes can get a free home risk assessment check.

The contact number for the community fire safety team is 0800 917 8137.