FOUR YOUNG children have died following a house fire in the London Borough of Sutton yesterday evening.
Police were called by the London Fire Brigade shortly after 7pm on Thursday, 16 December to reports of a fire at a residential address on Collingwood Road.
Officers attended along with the London Ambulance Service.
Eight fire engines and around 60 firefighters were called to the house. The first fire crews on scene were faced with an intense blaze throughout the whole of the ground floor.
The fire was extinguished and four children - two 3-year-old boys and two 4-year-old boys - were recovered from the address. The boys are all related.
They were treated at the scene before being taken to two south London hospitals. Very sadly, all four were pronounced dead.
A 27-year-old woman has been arrested on suspicion of child neglect and remains in police custody.
Superintendent Rob Shepherd said:
"The thoughts of everyone at the South Area Command Unit are with the family and friends of these four young children, who have suffered such a devastating and tragic loss tonight. I know these sentiments will be shared by the local community, Sutton and London as a whole.
"We remain on scene with our emergency service colleagues and will be working through the night and beyond. At this very early stage the cause of the fire is unknown and will be investigated."
London Fire Commissioner Andy Roe has spoken of his profound sadness after the tragic death of four children.
"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.”
Next of kin are aware and will be provided with specialist support.
Road closures are in place and emergency services remain at the scene.