Rhyl house blast couple's 'lucky escape'

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An elderly couple had an "extremely lucky escape" after a cigarette caused an explosion of pressurised oxygen cylinders in their Denbighshire home.

They escaped unhurt from the bedroom fire in Rhyl on Monday after 05:30 GMT.

But the oxygen line connected to the cylinder was then ignited, causing the explosion and damaging the property.

North Wales Fire and Rescue Service said the incident highlighted the dangers of smoking close to pressurised cylinders.

Fire service safety manager Gary Brandrick said: "This couple was extremely lucky to escape unharmed.

"It is highly likely that had there been anyone in the property when this cylinder exploded that they would have suffered fatal blast and burn injuries.

"This is not the first incident of this type in the region. We have had previous incidents that have resulted in serious injury and tragically the loss of life.

"Cylinders should never be kept near naked flames, heaters or combustible materials."

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