A COMMUNITY has been left shocked after a "devastating" house fire in which a woman has died.

As the Star reported, firefighters were called to a blaze at a semi-detached property on Sandringham Drive, Sutton on the morning of Monday, April 15. 

Crews were on scene shortly before 10am, with two fire engines initially attending. 

At the height of the incident - which saw the blaze take hold on the first floor and the roof space - six fire engines were there and one aerial appliance.

Four firefighters entered the house, fighting the flames while searching inside.
One casualty was brought out of the property by firefighters into the care of paramedics and was taken to hospital.

St Helens Star: Emergency services on Sandringham Drive on MondayEmergency services on Sandringham Drive on Monday (Image: St Helens Star)

Tragically, the resident's death was confirmed at the hospital.
Emergency services have not released any further details, but it is understood the victim was a woman.

Shocked and saddened neighbours say she was a pensioner who lived alone.

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Star readers have expressed sympathy in the wake of the tragedy.

One said: "Rip to the lady, deepest condolences to her family & friends and let's not forgetting MFRS crews & the drs and nurses for trying their best."

A joint investigation between MFRS and Merseyside Police has revealed that the fire was accidental and was likely caused by smoker’s materials.

Fire service warns of dangers of smoking in house

Following the blaze, the fire service has issued a warnings over the potentially devastating consequences of smoking in the house.

Area manager Mark Thomas said: “This is a devastating incident, and our thoughts are very much with the family and friends of the person involved.

"I would like also to commend the efforts of our fire control staff and our fire crews who acted quickly to retrieve the casualty and North West Ambulance Service colleagues who made every effort to provide emergency resuscitation for the casualty.

"The investigation initially indicates that the fire started in a bedroom and was likely caused accidentally by smoker’s materials.

"We would advise anyone who does smoke to do so carefully, ensure cigarettes are properly extinguished in a heavy ashtray and please never smoke in bed or when sleepy. If possible, smoke outside or try to give up smoking altogether."

St Helens Star: The house damaged by smokeThe house damaged by smoke (Image: St Helens Star)

He added: "Smoke alarms had alerted people nearby who did exactly the right thing by calling 999 - please ensure you have working smoke alarms on every level of your home and check them regularly. If you hear a smoke alarm sounding, dial 999, every second can make a difference.”

MFRS added that firefighters and prevention staff will visit the area to provide vital fire safety advice and complete free home fire safety checks as part of a reassurance campaign over the coming days.