A MORTLAKE family luckily escaped their home during a blaze which tore through most of the Burke Street property last Sunday afternoon.
Mortlake Country Fire Authority (CFA) captain Tony Spoore said the fire broke out within the Burke Street property at about 2.30pm due to a non-suspicious electrical fault in the south eastern corner of the house.
The initial fire fight took about half an hour, with CFA members and officers remaining at the property to clean up the damage for most of the afternoon.
“It was a big clean-up operation,” Mr Spoore said.
Mortlake Police Acting Sergeant Jo Wastell said a 33 year-old woman and three of her children were in the house at the time.
“A passer-by visiting the town saw the smoke and rang triple zero,” she said.
A neighbour also entered the property to save a dog.
Ambulance officers transferred the neighbour, the 33 year-old woman and her 12 month-old child to Warrnambool Base Hospital for treatment for smoke inhalation.
“They were lucky the smoke detectors were working properly,” Actg Sgt Wastell said.
The woman’s partner and their 11 year-old child were not in the house at the time, but arrived on the scene shortly after the blaze began.
A Warrnambool aerial pumper and tankers from Mortlake and Noorat were on scene throughout the afternoon.