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Bolton house fire believed to have started on the ground floor

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service believe a house fire, which claimed four lives on Saturday, started on the ground floor.

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Firefighters visit homes to "offer reassurance and advice"

The scene of the devastating fire on Saturday. Credit: ITV News

Firefighters and community safety teams in Bolton have visited over 200 homes to "offer reassurance and advice".

It follows the horrific fire which left a mother and her three children dead at their home on Rosamond Street on Saturday.

As part of the "Safe and Well" visits, officers have placed fire alarms in people's houses and offered advice on what actions to take in the event of a fire.

Officers from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service and Greater Manchester Police, now believe that the tragic fire on Saturday was caused accidentally by a halogen heater in the living room at the front of the house.

“When anyone loses their life in a fire, it is devastating – but even more so when it involves young lives.

“Our deepest condolences go to the family, friends and the local community following this tragic incident. We are especially thinking of the father of the children who has lost his family in such terrible circumstances.

“This was a tragic accident and over the coming days and weeks we will be working hard to spread our safety messages and offer reassurance and advice to residents to try and make sure that this never happens again.”

– Assistant County Fire Officer Tony Hunter

For further information about how to stay safe in your home, visit http://www.manchesterfire.gov.uk/fire_safety_advice/fire_safety_advice/

Bolton house fire relatives in "total shock"

The scene of the house fire in Bolton Credit: Andy Bonner

The family of a mother and three children killed in a house fire have said they are in "total shock".

Anisha Umerji, 40, her two sons Hammad, 12, and Yusuf, 10, and five-year-old daughter Khadija died after a blaze took hold of their home in Rosamond Street, Bolton, at around 9am on Saturday.

In a statement released through the Bolton Council of Mosques, the family said the fire was accidental and was caused by a halogen heater.

They added: "We are aware that all the emergency services did everything they could to rescue the family members and we appreciate their efforts."

The statement said: "The families are in total shock at the events of yesterday morning where an accidental fire caused by a halogen heater led to the sad fatalities of Aneesa, Hammad, Yusuf and Khadija.

"We are also humbled and overwhelmed with the support received from the wider community of Bolton and surrounding towns.

"We are very grateful to BCOM for their continued support in our difficult time.

"The families are still trying to come to terms with what has happened and are focused on offering support to each other.

"We respectfully request that you all pray for the departed and allow the families to come to terms with their tragic loss.

"The families would be very grateful if the media can respect our privacy and allow us to grieve.

"Thank you once again for everyone's kind words and support, they have provided much-needed strength in these very testing times."

The father, named locally as Zubair Umerji, remains in hospital after jumping from a first floor window and then attempting to smash his way back into the house.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service assistant county officer Tony Hunter said crews found the "distraught" man trying to get into the small terraced house, screaming that his wife and children were inside.

Crews battled through the "intense" fire and "no visibility" to pull the victims from the home and were "emotional" to learn they had died, Mr Hunter said.

Greater Manchester Police said: "A joint investigation with Manchester Fire and Rescue was launched to establish the cause of the fire and officers can now confirm there are not believed to be any suspicious circumstances."

Police said the bodies had been formally identified and details passed to the coroner.

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