A 27-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of child neglect after two sets of twins, all boys, aged three and four, were killed in a fire in a house on Collingwood Road, West Sutton last night.
The children were given CPR by firefighters and were taken to two separate hospitals where they later died, the London Fire Brigade said.
The boys had been left home alone, the LFB confirmed. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
This morning, speaking to reporters at the scene, London Fire Brigade deputy commissioner Richard Mills said, “Firstly, I’d like to acknowledge the terrible tragedy that took place last night and our thoughts remain with the family, friends and community of the sad loss of life of four young children.
“Yesterday evening, shortly before 7pm, fire crews attended the scene with eight fire engines and 60 firefighters.
“We rapidly entered the building with breathing apparatus crews and rescued four children from the building.
“We immediately carried out CPR resuscitation at the scene.
“The children were taken to a local hospital.
“And, sadly, those four children died later that evening.
“The cause of the fire is currently unknown and we have fire investigation teams on scene at present along with the Metropolitan Police to determine the cause of the fire.”
Scotland Yard issued a statement: “Police were called by the London Fire Brigade shortly after 19.00hrs on Thursday, 16 December to reports of a fire at a residential address on Collingwood Road in Sutton.
“Officers attended along with the London Ambulance Service.
“The fire was extinguished and four children – all believed to be related – were recovered from the address.
“They were treated at the scene before being taken to two south London hospitals.
“Very sadly, all four were pronounced dead.
“Next of kin are aware and will be provided with specialist support.
“Road closures are in place and emergency services remain at the scene.”
The LFB’s reports described an “intense blaze” throughout the whole of the ground floor of the property.
London fire commissioner Andy Roe said: “This is an incident that has left everyone numb with profound sadness. My thoughts are with the family and friends of the children, the whole local community and all those who will be affected by this fire.
“Fire crews arrived quickly and located the children inside the property. They were brought out of the house and given immediate emergency care. The welfare of our staff involved in this incident is very important to us and all of them will be offered counselling as a priority.”
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