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Mother and son escape house after lightning strike starts fire

A son believes his deaf mother would not have made it out of her home alive if he had not been there when it was struck by lightning.

Alan Williams, 64, had been asleep at his mum’s house in Ash Lane, Dedworth, in the early hours of Wednesday when he was woken by a loud bang that ‘sounded like a bomb going off’.

He rushed into his elderly mum Joyce’s bedroom and helped her escape down the stairs before returning to find the loft ablaze.

Alan said: “I thought it was a bomb going off.

“It was a big bang and I went into her room and said ‘mum’ and she was asking me what was the matter. If I hadn’t been here I don’t think she would have made it out.”

Crews from Slough Fire Station arrived at about 2am and managed to put out the fire before it spread.

It is believed the lightning bolt hit the TV aerial at the front of the house and travelled through wiring before setting the loft ablaze.

Alan and 85-year-old Joyce, who wears a hearing aid, have now been left with a gaping hole in their loft while their water pipes have also been damaged.

He praised the quick response of firefighters, and his neighbours for taking them in during their ordeal.

“The firefighters did a brilliant job in restricting it. If they hadn’t been so quick I think they would have struggled to stop it spreading,” Alan added.

“You don’t expect it to happen, it’s a freak thing really. It could have happened anywhere.

“It’s just made a mess more than anything.”

Firefighters stayed at the scene for about three hours and removed tiles from the roof and insulation from the loft to reduce the risk of another fire.

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