THE grandmother of the three children who died in a house fire in Bridlington last year has warned families to keep their homes safe from fire – and avoid another tragedy.
An inquest into the deaths of William, nine, AJ, five, and Maddie, three, confirmed that a discarded cigarette was the most likely cause of the blaze which swept through the bottom floor of their house in Clarence Avenue last November.
The fire claimed the lives of all three children and left their mum, Samantha Hudson, with brain damage.
Coroner Geoffrey Saul said the children’s deaths were caused by smoke inhalation, and recorded a verdict of accidental death.
Now the children’s grandmother, Sharon Hudson, hopes the verdict will encourage families in the town to be careful in their own homes.
She said: “The only good thing that can come out of it now is that it could warn people to be careful, especially when they are smoking, and to have working smoke alarms and an escape plan.
“Hopefully this could save somebody else’s life.”
Mrs Hudson, who gave evidence at the inquest at Hull Coroner’s Court, said afterwards she was “relieved for it all to be over”.
She said: “I am glad everything to do with the fire is finished now, everyone just wants to move on.
“I’m quite pleased that the coroner said we had to realise that although it was a cigarette that started the fire, it was an accident. Something like that can happen to anybody.”
“Everybody said how brave Sam had been by going upstairs to get to her kids.
“How she got up there, nobody knows, because breathing in carbon monoxide makes you very confused.
“Unfortunately, she went to the wrong place.”
Samantha, 27, is still in a rehabilitation centre in Goole and is improving slowly.
“It is the best place for her to be,” said her mother. “Sam isn’t really much better, but she is making little bits of progress.
“She understands us when we talk to her and she now knows about the fire and that the children are gone.
“She has said a few words but not very often. Sometimes it looks like she is trying to tell us something.”