News

Family loses 30 pet snakes as fire consumes home

A LONE Lego man was left in the charred remains of Daniel, Tayha and Chaise Bowker's Cowan Cres home in Emerald.

In the early hours of last Wednesday, the Bowkers lost everything they owned in the property which was not protected by a working smoke alarm.

Daniel, who was at work at Daunia Mine at the time of the fire, said his partner Tayha and son Chaise were lucky to escape.

"My partner was taking the kitten out of the room when she saw smoke coming out of the snake room," he said.

"She ran back into the bedroom to grab our five-year-old son, before going outside and calling 000.

"By the time the firies arrived the house was engulfed and, sadly, nothing could be retrieved, however no one was injured and both dogs were rescued."

To add insult to incredible injury, Daniel said the family was not insured.

"We are fairly gutted," he said. "We didn't have contents insurance either, so that was a lesson learnt.

"The loss of over 30 snakes was brutal, there was some nice (ones) including albinos, platinums and a scrub python.

"I also collected a lot of video game collectibles, which sadly now can't be replaced, as well as my partner's jewellery and my son's Lego."

QFES Emerald Station Officer Clive Weeks said it was a sorry reminder that landlords and tenants had responsibilities when it came to operational fire alarms.

"In this house fire the smoke alarm was not working... and had not been maintained in an operating condition," Mr Weeks said.

"At the height of the fire there were three appliances, two from Emerald and one from Capella, but by the time they arrived it was fully involved.

"The fire was really intense in one place and spread into the ceiling very quickly and mushroomed down - it was very hot, very fast."

Landlords and their property agents must ensure the smoke alarm is working and in good order within 30 days of starting a new tenancy and must replace the alarm before it reaches the end of its service life.

"If they get a call from the tenant that the alarm is not working for some reason they should have it replaced as quickly as possible," Mr Weeks said.

Legally, tenants must clean and test a smoke alarm at least once a year and are required to replace flat batteries.

Daniel wanted to thank everyone who helped by donating toys and clothes to the family.

They are now staying in Rockhampton.

Topics:  editors picks


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Members needed for club to survive

Auctioneer Len "Fonz” Bargenquest and Rotary member Errol Rix at the Blackwater Rotary Auction.

Blackwater Rotary Club is looking for more members

It's time to pay council rates

The Central Highlands Regional Council office in Emerald.

Rates are expected in the letterboxes of Central Highlands residents

Flood mitigation work complete

MITIGATION PROJECT: The earthmover at work to clear the Nogoa River.

The flood mitigation project in the Nogoa River is complete.

Local Partners

MKR turns spiteful in suddendeath elimination

A MERE two points separated two teams from My Kitchen Rules, in a spiteful sudden-death cook-off.

Jilted Married At First Sight groom rejected again

Is Married at First Sight groom's second chance over already?

Sir Elton John coming to Mackay: What you need to know

Sir Elton will come to Mackay and Cairns in September.

Tickets to the concert go on sale on March 14

MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT: Global superstar to rock Mackay in 2017

A major concert is set to rock Mackay this year.

Mackay, Cairns to host world's biggest superstars Sir Elton John

Robert Irwin introduces Jimmy Fallon to wild guests

Robert Irwin introduces Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon to a cuddly sloth.

ROBERT Irwin continues Steve's legacy.

MOVIE REVIEW: Trespass Against Us a 'tender' crime film

Michael Fassbender and Brendan Gleeson in a scene from the movie Trespass Against Us.

Tough British film about criminal clan proves touching

Crocodile, hippo fears as I'm A Celeb filming hit by flooding

Flooding hits the set of I'm A Celebrity ... Get Me Out Of Here!

Fears crocodiles and hippos could infiltrate I'm A Celeb camp

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Expert: Why renters, home buyers may struggle

Matusik Property Insights director Michael Matusik.

What's next for the city's housing market

Massive seaside development of 3200 lots

DESIRABLE LIFESTYLE: The masterplan for the proposed Elliott Heads Estate.

"There's nothing else left along the coastline of Queensland now"

Potential home buyers punished for doing the 'right thing'

Should I go to university or buy a house?

50 more high rise buildings planned for Brisbane CBD

Height limits have been scrapped for Brisbane CBD

800,000 more people expected to work in city over next 20 years

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!