A SCHOOLBOY has left his family temporarily homeless after disaster struck as he played with fire in the bedroom of their South Yorkshire house.
Firefighters say the 12-year-old lit a blaze in his room and then panicked and threw a burning item out of his window.
Unbeknown to him the flames lit some leaves in the guttering outside his bedroom and the fire spread under the roof tiles.
The roof went up in flames and the blaze caused severe smoke damage inside the property.
The boy’s mum, who was bathing her baby when the fire was discovered, got her two children out unharmed and raised the alarm.
Firefighters who arrived to deal with the incident on Lidgett Grange, Hoyland Common, Barnsley, had to remove roof tiles at the back of the property to get to the flames underneath.
Paul Sherriff, aged 33, who lives next door and built the new four-bedroom homes in the exclusive development five years ago, praised firefighters for preventing the flames from spreading to adjoining properties. He said: “The roof at the back of the house was burning and there was lots of smoke - it was close to my house but I was just pleased that everybody next door got out safely.”
Station Manager Neil Baugh, who investigated the blaze, said: “I’m sure the young boy didn’t intend for this to happen, but there’s always a risk of such accidents occurring when lighters or matches are in the hands of people who don’t understand how easily and quickly fire can spread.”