Young mum of two loses everything in West Lothian house fire, including pet cat Sparkles
A YOUNG mother of two has been left with nothing after her house went up in flames, losing much-loved pet cat Sparkles in the carnage.
Chloe Christie, 27, woke up to smoke billowing through her bedroom at about 7.30am yesterday (Wednesday).
She grabbed her children, Sophie, 11, and Carter, two, who were still asleep in their bedroom.
The single mum then ran back into the burning house to rescue her dog, Harley, but her pet cat Sparkles died in the tragic incident.
“I could feel the heat on my face,” she said.
“As soon as I woke up I could hear, smell and taste the fire and the curtains were up in flames already.
“I just ran as fast as I could to grab the children and get them outside and called the fire service.
“The fire has ruined everything and made us homeless, we have nothing.”
Ms Christie, who lived in the two bedroom house in South Park Place, Livingston, said the entire building has been damaged and it could be another six months before she and her children can move back in.
All three had to be taken to hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation.
She said the family, including Harley, a golden labrador, have been left devastated at the loss of their “beloved kitten.”
“I discharged myself from hospital early to go and find Sparkles. It’s just so distressing thinking about the way she died,” she said.
“We have all been really affected by the smoke inhalation as well.
“Black stuff got into our lungs, I could see Carter coughing it up, it’s made us feel so unwell.
The young family are staying with Ms Christie’s mother, Catherine, until they can find temporary accommodation.
“My little Sophie is so traumatised by the whole thing, especially because we’ve lost Sparkles,” she continued.
“She was just a little thing.
“We are sleeping on a sofa at the moment.
“The housing association said they don’t have anything for us yet.”
Ms Christie believes the fire broke out because her phone caught fire while it was charging, but investigations into the cause are still ongoing.
A Gofundme page has been set up to asking for donations to help Ms Christie and her children get back on their feet.
A request has also been made for clothes given the family lost everything in the fire.
A Scottish Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: “We were alerted at 7.43am on Wednesday, September 18 to reports of a fire within a two storey building on Southpark Place in Livingston.
“Operations Control mobilised three appliances to the scene where firefighters extinguished the fire.
“One woman was treated by firefighters before being transferred into the care of the Scottish Ambulance Service.
“Crews left the scene after ensuring the area was made safe.”
A spokesperson for Almond Housing Association said: "We were very sorry to learn about the fire at Southpark Place and our thoughts and sympathies are with Ms Christie and her family.
"Our aim is to provide support and assistance to all our tenants, especially tenants who are facing difficult times. In this case we are doing everything we can to support our tenant and her family after this tragic event.
"Ms Christie’s home has been quite severely damaged by the fire and we are currently assessing the remedial works which will be required to return the property to its previous standard.
"In the meantime, we are in dialogue with the family and are looking for a suitable property in our stock which we could offer Miss Christie and her family.
"We are also liaising with colleagues at West Lothian Council in order to ensure that they are offered suitable emergency short-term temporary accommodation in the meantime.”