Police exploring possibility of fourth victim in Fermanagh house fire

Police are working to establish how many victims were involved in a deadly house fire in Derrylin, Co Fermanagh

Three generations of the same family are feared to have died in a horrific house fire in Fermanagh.

Police have confirmed that at least three people lost their lives in the inferno which engulfed an isolated farm house on the outskirts of Derrylin on Tuesday morning.

And detectives said they are exploring the possibility of a fourth victim, which the News Letter understands may be an infant.

The PSNI is continuing to probe the circumstances surrounding the fire, which they are treating as deliberate.

A 27-year-old man remains in police custody and is being questioned on suspicion of murder, having been arrested at the scene.

The property – which was reduced to ruins in the blaze – was owned by Derrylin man Tommy Fee, who battled in vain to save the occupants.

While police have not yet released any details about the three confirmed victims, Mr Fee named them as Diane Gossett, 19, Edward Gossett, 16, and their mother Crystal Gossett.

He added that Diane’s daughter, who he believes was aged under two, also lived in the property.

Mr Fee told how the family – who are originally from Doncaster – had moved into the rented property about 18 months ago, having previously lived in Tralee, Co Kerry.

“They very much kept themselves to themselves and didn’t leave the house very often,” he added.

Speaking to the News Letter, the landlord recounted the harrowing moments he fought to rescue the family.

Having received a phone call around 7am informing him that the property was ablaze, Mr Fee rushed to the scene.

Seeing the house engulfed in flames, he tried desperately to gain access by smashing doors and windows using a sledgehammer.

But there was nothing that could be done to save the occupants.

“The fire was too well-on by the time we arrived and there was nothing we could do to help them. We were 15 minutes too late,” he added.

Mr Fee said the tragedy will “haunt” him for the rest of his life.

“I just did what any normal person would do in that situation, but I couldn’t save them. I am trying to come to terms with it but it is something that will stay with me.”

PSNI Detective Inspector Peter McKenna said specialist search and rescue teams are working to identify those who died.

He said: “I am aware of local information about a family living in this property and reports of a fourth victim.

“At this stage we are still working intensively to establish how many victims were involved in this appalling incident.”

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