East Albury care home fire blamed on accident

A DISABILITY service organisation is looking for a new home for a teenage client after fire caused up to $300,000 worth of damage to an Alana Street home in East Albury on Tuesday night.

Aspire Support Services rented the house for clients who required full-time care.

Police Inspector David Cottee said the 19-year-old man was being looked after by one of his carers when he accidentally lit a fire just after 8pm and tried to put it out with water from a fish tank.

Insp Cottee said the man told his carer, who was in another room, that his doona was alight and the pair escaped the quickly growing flames and called the fire brigade.

Aspire chief executive Nigel Stone said it was traumatic for the young man and his carer.

“There was no sign that it was deliberately lit — I think it was a freak accident,” Mr Stone said.

“He’s as traumatised as anybody would be in that situation and we’ll continue to support him and make sure he’s got all available options to get him through this.”

Aspire ensured the young man had a roof over his head last night.

“It was very stressful for our staff, but it’s amazing how many people came together to make sure our staff and client are safe and well,” he said.

The teen was the only client living in the house at the time and is looked after full-time by a rotating group of carers.