Dundee mum tells of shock at coming home to see her flat in flames

Joan Cooney

A woman has told of the moment she found her flat in flames.

Joan Cooney, 34, had been staying with relatives while she decorated her Wiston Place home.

However, her plans have been set back after the blaze started in her flat yesterday.

The mum-of-one said she was shocked to find her home full of smoke and her living room alight when she turned up at about 10.30am yesterday.

The fire is believed to have started accidentally in a sofa, though the exact cause is not known.

Joan said: “I came home and opened the door and the whole house was full of smoke.

“It’s terrifying to think what could have happened.

“It could have been much worse, I could have been home with my daughter.

“If the fire had taken hold then it could have been the whole block that went up.

“I don’t feel safe living here anymore — I just keep thinking that I could have been here with my four-year-old daughter Megan.

“It was the biggest fright of my life to come in and see the place on fire.

“I am in the process of doing the flat up and one of the only things I was keeping was the couch but it’s completely destroyed now.

“We were only coming up to sort everything out so that the council could take it away.

“The whole house is smoke-damaged now. I don’t know what I am going to do. I am totally stuck, it’s just devastating.”

Joan Cooney pictured in the living room of her flat where her sofa caught fire on September 13, 2017 at Wiston Place

Joan said she initially thought that the flat had been broken into and the fire started deliberately, adding: “I don’t know how they could have gotten in because there wasn’t any sign of forced entry. That was my first thought when I came back.”

A spokeswoman for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said firefighters had attended the scene alongside Police Scotland.

She said: “We were called to a dwelling fire on Wiston Place at 10.36am. Fire crews attended the scene, which was made safe, and the incident is now in the hands of Police Scotland.”

A spokesman for Police Scotland confirmed officers had attended the fire but said that following investigation, the blaze was being treated as accidental.