Hatfield family's heartache after pets die in firework accident
PUBLISHED: 10:09 02 November 2017 | UPDATED: 10:09 02 November 2017
A Hatfield mum is urging people to stop letting off fireworks in their gardens after one landed in her garden, killing the family's three rabbits and destroying their shed.
Louise, 47, Vic Bather, and their two teenage sons, of Stanley Drive, were left devastated after the their pets Peter, Mummy and Skitzy died.
On Saturday, October 28, at around 10pm the couple were relaxing in their living room, which faces the garden, when they heard a loud bang.
Vic went to check out what it was only to discover that the back of his garden was ablaze.
The couple’s youngest son Joe, 16, was on his computer at the time but ran down the stairs and tried to push past his parents to save the rabbits.
Louise said: “It was devastating watching everything burn.
“It all happened so fast.
“It was too late.
“I couldn’t let Joe go out there, he would have gotten hurt.
“It was heartbreaking to hold him back but we knew we had to.
“The garden was engulfed in the flames.
“The whole back of the garden is destroyed.”
Louise, who is a childminder, lost a lot of the children’s toys, a shed containing Vic’s tools, a tumble dryer and other items in the fire.
Louise said: “I haven’t told the children that I look after about the rabbits but they have been so sweet and offered to donate their toys.
“Everyone, neighbours, friends, strangers, have come forward to help.
“The support is so lovely.”
The family haven’t let off fireworks in their garden for years after deeming them dangerous but this incident has encouraged Louise to talk about the dangers.
Louise said: “I really think they should be banned from private use.
“This was an accident, but still, look at the devastation.
“I can’t help but think ‘what if we weren’t in’ would it have spread to our home?
“My son would have been upstairs, none the wiser.
“Or would he have run outside to save the rabbits and have gotten hurt?
“They should only be used at public events. They’re not safe.”
Louise added: “Hatfield fire service arrived so quickly and were just amazing.
“They helped to console my son over the rabbits and even pulled out their bodies for us so we didn’t have to.
“I just can’t thank them enough.”