'Debris in house' hampers Durham fire rescue

A 65-year-old woman died in the blaze at the property

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Firefighters called to a fatal house fire in Durham said the rescue was hampered by debris blocking the door.

Emergency services were called to Honister Place, Newton Aycliffe, where a 65-year-old woman, and a 37-year-old man were trapped on Monday.

They were taken from the building and the woman died later in hospital. The man is not believed to be badly hurt.

County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue said rubbish piled against the front door blocked escape routes.

'Difficult access'

It is the second fatal house fire in County Durham in as many months.

John Walkden, from the fire service, said: "The crew were able to rescue one person from the window but unfortunately due to circumstances inside the building we had to make another point of entry via the front door to rescue the female casualty.

"As you can see from the debris the occupants were hoarders.

"Due to the amount of debris and content in the building, it was very difficult to gain access via the front door.

"There was no clear escape routes. That is why the crews found it difficult to get in there."

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