A Sussex family forced to flee from their new home in the middle of the night after their kitchen caught fire, have praised firefighters who saved the lives of their precious dogs.
The Peussa family were woken by their smoke alarm in the early hours of March 30 to find their kitchen well-alight and their labrador springers, Otto and Digby, trapped inside.
Mum Ellie Peussa said: “We tried to get them, but obviously they were so frightened they would not move.
“So all we could do was leave them.”
Luckily two fire engines from Bexhill Fire Station were quickly on the scene and crews raced into the kitchen to rescue the beloved family pets.
By this time the nine-year-old brothers were unconscious, and after giving them oxygen, firefighters decided to take them to the vets in a desperate bid to save their lives.
Mrs Peussa said: “They were incredible. “They blue-lighted them in the back of the fire engine to Sussex Coast Vets.
“The vets looked after them really well and after three or four days they came out with really bad coughs, but they bounced back.”
Ellie, husband Paul and grown-up children Dewi and Rhiannon, were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation.
The family had only just moved from Eastbourne into the property in Little Common Road, Bexhill, two days before the fire broke out in the dishwasher.
They are still waiting to move back into their home.
But Otto and Digby have bounced back and this week the family visited Bexhill’s firefighters to say thank you for saving their lives.
Mrs Peussa said: “We just wanted to say thank you and show them how the boys were.
“I think some of them even went in to see them at the vets. They have been incredibly kind.
“It’s all had a happy ending.”
Crew manager Daryl Streeter, the officer in charge on the night of the incident, was one of those who met the family.
He said the case highlighted the importance of having a working smoke alarm installed.
* Picture courtesy of Bexhill Fire Station.
* Don’t miss out on all the latest breaking news where you live.
Here are four ways you can be sure you’ll be amongst the first to know what’s going on.
1) Make our website your homepage
2) Like our Facebook page
3) Follow us on Twitter
4) Register with us by clicking on ‘sign in’ (top right corner). You can then receive our daily newsletter AND add your point of view to stories that you read here.
And do share with your family and friends - so they don’t miss out!
Always the first with your local news.
Be part of it.