Hadpsen family lose 'everything' in structure fire

A Launceston family has  “lost everything” after a house fire on Friday night. 

The fire at Hadspen occurred about 11.30pm.

Tasmania Police Sergeant Ben Kromkamp said “multiple” Tasmania Fire Service vehicles attended the blaze.

“The fire was quickly extinguished, however the house suffered major structural damage with the damage bill unknown at this stage,” Sergeant Kromkamp said.

“The property suffered extensive damage to both the residence and the items inside.”

The occupants were home at the time of the fire, but all escaped without injury.

Their pets, two cats and a dog, escaped as well.

However, Wilson, the family’s Bengal cat went missing on Friday night, and wasn’t found until Saturday afternoon.

Wilson jumped out of a car window while the family was moving to safety and was lost for about 15 hours. 

The family’s niece posted on Facebook group Tasmania’s Lost Pet Register asking for Hadspen residents to keep an eye out for him. 

The post said the Bengal cat was “much loved”. 

Wilson was found nearby on Saturday, “frightened but okay”, the family’s niece said. 

Tasmania Police said the cause of the structure fire was accidental.

A Tasmania Fire Service examiner attended the scene.

They believed a small electronic hand-held device may have been the cause of the blaze, Sergeant Kromkamp said.

“This is a timely reminder, especially with holidays and Christmas approaching, even small electronic devices can become an ignition source if faulty,” he said.  

“Members of the community should be vigilant with not leaving electronic devices unattended for any length of time.”

There have been more than 10 house fires in the state this year.

One was an historic homestead sustaining $1 million in damage, another was in the South and one at Railton in the North-West.

A spate of house fires in Winter alone prompted Tasmania Fire Service to speak out and warn people about electrical safety. The TFS said electrical fires were the third most common house fire in Tasmania, but said it had increased because families used more technology.