Family lucky to escape as blaze burns Bellbird Park home
A YOUNG family lost almost everything and was lucky to escape unharmed after fire ripped through a Bellbird Park home in the early hours of the morning.
Mother-of-two Michelle Stewart said she and partner James Lucacevich had recently installed deadlocks on the front door, following a Mother's Day break-in in which thousands of dollars in property was stolen.
Those same deadlocks almost prevented the family from escaping, after a smoke alarm jolted them from their beds about 1.50am yesterday.
A fire ignited somewhere in the engine bay of the Holden Commodore that was parked in the garage.
The fire spread quickly, engulfing the front corner of the house in a matter of minutes.
Ms Stewart said there were frantic efforts to escape the inferno with her children.
"There was this thick black smoke, and we could see fire coming out of the driver's side of the car," she said.
"I couldn't breathe and I was just concerned about how I would get my kids out of the house."
By this time, neighbours Adam Evans and Kimberley Booth had come up to the house to see what was going on.
Mr Evans was awoken by the sound of smoke alarms and Ms Stewart's screaming.
"The house was bellowing smoke," he said.
"Michelle was screaming about the kids. We ran up there and yelled out to see if she was alright.
"There was thick black smoke everywhere and they couldn't find the key to the deadlock."
Mr Lucacevich eventually found the key and the family, including kids Amelia, 3, and Levi, 6, escaped.
Devastatingly, the family lost most of its belongings in the intense blaze.
Ms Stewart said many items were packed in the garage because she and her partner were in the process of moving.
"We had some things on the clothes line, but apart from that we have lost almost everything," Ms Stewart said.
"We don't even have a car."
Forensic police scoured the scene early yesterday, however they have all but ruled out foul play. It was believed an electrical fault in the vehicle was to blame.