An aquarium saved a family of five from a potentially deadly blaze at their home in Warrington, Cheshire.
Steve Whitehall had forgotten to blow out a Christmas candle in his lounge before he went to bed, but the fire that ensued caused a nearby 100 l/22 gal. aquarium to shatter, dousing the flames and putting out most of the blaze.
The family were woken early in the morning by the sound of the fish tank bursting. They rushed downstairs to discover the damage and then left the house to phone the fire brigade.
Steve and Elizabeth Whitehall and their three children were unharmed, but the residents of the aquarium were not so lucky. Most of the fish died when the tank exploded, although two were found still alive in a tiny pocket of water at the bottom.
Mr Whitehall said: "We often have candles burning around the house and are usually very careful about making sure they are all out before we go to bed or go out. Unfortunately, we missed one last night and I cannot believe the damage that has been caused from just that one candle.
"We now have to sort out a fire damaged lounge, replace Christmas presents and have lost more than 13 fish.
"I dread to think what would have happened if the sound of the breaking tank hadn’t woken us and alerted us to the fire."
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