30/01/2004

Pensioner dies in flat fire

A blaze at a flat in Co Down has claimed the life of a disabled 80-year-old woman this morning may have been started by a candle.

The fire was discovered at the flat in High Street, Portaferry at around 8.30pm on Thursday.

Neighbours made unsuccessful attempts to reach the woman, named as Jose Coll. And although firefighters arrived within minutes, they too were unable to reach the pensioner in the living room of the flat.

A spokesperson for the Fire Service said that the blaze was "well developed" when the fire crew arrived and that despite their best efforts it was too late to save the woman.

(SP)

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