Heartbreak for family's new start
A MUM and her two young children lost almost everything they owned when a fire ripped through their home early yesterday.
Tammy Scott had dropped her 11-year-old son and eight-year-old daughter to school and left for work in Ipswich when she received a phone call informing her of the grim news about 7.30am.
Neighbours reported hearing cracking noises, but by the time they noticed the fire, it had already taken hold of the single story Logan Unit-style home on Noonans Lane in Peak Crossing - about 20km south of Ipswich.
A devastated Ms Scott said she had only moved to the quiet farming area in March.
"I was only at work a few minutes when they called me and said my house was on fire," a tearful Ms Scott said.
"I moved out here to give my kids a new start - some start this is."
Ms Scott feared that three pet parrots and a guinea pig that were kept inside would have perished in the flames.
Luckily, pet shar pei "Chloe" survived the blaze and could be seen wandering around the house after several crews of firefighters doused the flames.
Emergency services workers wore face masks as huge plumes of smoke floated east along Noonans Lane, filling the sky around Peak Crossing.
The 30-year-old house was thought to have contained large amounts of asbestos.
While the loss of the home was heart-breaking for Ms Scott and her children, it was also a second blow for local pig farmer Ian Smith, who has owned the home for the last seven years.
Mr Smith lost several of his pigs and a large shed in a fire on his property in June last year.
He had only just had the shed rebuilt through insurance before this latest incident, which occurred only a short distance from his home on Ipswich-Boonah Rd.
"I was out spreading fertilizer when I looked across and saw smoke," he said. "I had a second look at it and thought, hell, that looks like it's the house burning."
Neighbour Larelle Hardy said the flames were intense, reaching up to five metres above the roof of the home.
She was first alerted to the fire across the road when she heard the roof crashing down.
"It looked as though it started in the rumpus room," Ms Hardy said.
"It is terrible - she's just a single mum with two young kids."
Harrisville Sergeant Matthew Thompson said initial investigations did not point to any suspicious circumstances.
"The main thing from our point of view is that all persons have been accounted for," Sgt Thompson said.
Fire investigators were yesterday trying to pinpoint the cause of the blaze.