Youngster still fighting for life after petrol blaze
Jul 18 2009 by Lisa Hutchinson, The Journal
ONE boy is out of intensive care while his friend still fights for life after an accident in which the pair were turned into human fireballs.
Friends Daniel Sinnitt, 12, and 10-year-old Lewis Nicholson were playing with a remote control car when they decided to set it on fire.
The small blaze cause an explosion when they added petrol to it, and both boys, from North Shields, were set alight.
Last night, Daniel was out of intensive care while Lewis was in a much more serious condition.
Daniel suffered burns to his legs and hands while Lewis received injuries to his face, neck and throat.
Yesterday, Daniel’s father Andrew, of Woolsington Road said: “Daniel’s trousers caught fire and the skin burnt on his legs. His right hand is also burnt.
“The doctors have burst the blisters on his legs and they are really swollen. We just pray he won’t be scarred for life.”
The incident happened at 9pm on Thursday at the back of Lewis’s house in Garrick Close. The boys were playing with three others when they were collecting snails to put in a remote control car.
The two decided to set the car on fire but it is understood while it was on fire they then poured a form of petrol used for the play car on top. The remote control vehicle exploded and sent flames shooting up six feet high, engulfing both boys, who are pupils at Norham Community Technology College.
Last night fire watch manager Michael Ainslie, based at Tynemouth Station, put out a warning to other youngsters.
He said: “We can’t stress the point enough the danger of playing with fire. We would also discourage parents from storing flammable liquids in their garages and sheds.”
A police spokesman said: “It seems the boys had set the remote control car on fire and saw there was not a big enough flame so they poured petrol on it. This caused a fireball and the children’s clothes caught fire.”
Courtney Errington, 10, of Garrick Close, was playing with the two boys at the time of the explosion.
She said: “These flames jumped up and they went on Lewis’s hands and face. The skin just peeled off his forehead. Daniel’s trousers were on fire and his skin was coming off his legs. I shouted and my mam came out. Lewis’s sister also came and threw a pan of water on him. It was horrible.”