A SOUTH Tyneside mother has blasted arsonists who left a burning wheelie bin up against the front door of her home – putting her and her son’s life at risk.
The woman, who did not wish to be named, says if it wasn’t for her smoke alarm waking her up, the incident could have ended in tragedy.
It was the second arson attack in Flagg Court, South Shields, in less than a month after Cathy Jerry, 73, and son Michael, 47, had to flee their ground floor flat when the front door was set alight in the early hours of June 10.
Yesterday’s blaze was started at 4.04am, with the bin pushed against the door of the downstairs flat blocking the only means of escape for those inside.
The mum said: “When I came down, the smoke was coming through the door. The bin was on fire and we couldn’t get out. I called the fire brigade, and both me and my son went into the bedroom with the window open and stayed there until the fire brigade came.
“They were really quick to get here. The same thing happened a few weeks ago to a neighbour.
“I was quite worried but then you start forgetting about it – but this has left me petrified.
“I’ve lived here 11 years and nothing like this has happened before. It’s the same sort of thing, wheelie bins being pushed against the doors. It is scary.
“What would happen if the person couldn’t get out? Whoever is doing this needs to be caught before someone is killed.”
The property was left with fire damage to the front door and smoke damage inside.
Detective Inspector Paul Woods, from Northumbria Police’s major crime team, said: “Thankfully, no one was injured as a result.
“We know incidents of this nature can cause concern in the community. We have officers patrolling the area and I’d ask people to speak to them with any concerns they have or any information on the arson.”
Anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, ext 69191, quoting log number 150 03/07/14, or Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
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