Mother and her two children saved in house gas explosion by fridge freezer

A mother fighting for her life with her two young boys in hospital after their home was destroyed in a huge explosion was ‘saved’ by her fridge freezer.

Jessica Williams, 31, her son Reuben, five and his two-year-old brother, Elliott, were found in the rubble of the demolished three-bedroom house in South Wales  at 2.05pm on Wednesday.

The mother and her two sons remain in critical but stable conditions in hospital after enduring serious burns up. 

Nursery worker Jessica was found by former firefighter Jeff Davies who said he found her underneath the large fridge freezer which had protected her from the rubble.

Nursery worker Jessica Williams, 31, her son Reuben, five and his two-year-old brother, Elliott, were found in the rubble of the demolished three-bedroom house in Neath, South Wales. Ms Williams was found underneath her fridge freezer by former firefighter Jeff Davies

Jessica Williams was seriously injured when her home in South Wales was destroyed in an explosion

Jessica Williams was seriously injured when her home in South Wales was destroyed in an explosion 

Her children Reuben and Elliott, five and his two, were also rushed to hospital in Bristol by air ambulance after Wednesday's explosion

Her children Reuben and Elliott, five and his two, were also rushed to hospital in Bristol by air ambulance after Wednesday’s explosion 

He said: ‘The house was completely collapsed. She was injured herself and very concerned for her children.

‘What had saved her was a large fridge freezer that were blown along side her – and there is a slight void to the side of this where she was lying.

‘She was definitely immense. Such a brave young lady,’ that he told The Sun

Mr Davies said he removed the rubble from around her and pulled her out after running over to the house after hearing a loud bang in Seven Sisters, near Neath.

He and another man who stumbled on help used a piece of timber from the roof to wedge the fridge freezer from from her. 

The terraced property was destroyed in a gas explosion at 2.05pm on Wednesday afternoon

The terraced property was destroyed in a gas explosion at 2.05pm on Wednesday afternoon

Friends said the boys were in so much pain they were ‘put to sleep’ before being airlifted to hospital.

The boys’ father Mike David was in work when that he heard there had been an explosion in the village.

He rushed to the scene phoning Ms Williams along the way but was unable to get an answer.

She was unconscious in the rubble but neighbours said she came around when she heard the telephone ringing.

Mr David was heard shouting: ‘My girlfriend, my girlfriend’ as he attained the house which was blown to bits in the explosion on Wednesday afternoon. 

Neighbours said the roof of the family home was blown 40ft up in the air and the force of the blast was felt 25 % of a mile away.

Jessica Williams, pictured with her partner Mike David, right, was seriously injured in the explosion

Jessica Williams, pictured with her partner Mike David, right, was seriously injured in the explosion 

Anthony Parsons, 68, one of many first on the scene, said: ‘It was absolute carnage, the entire front of the house was blasted out in to the road.

‘I ran down there and I really could see two children, they certainly were only tots.

‘Their mother was in an awful state, she had burns up over her arms and chest, all down her front was burned.’

Project manager Mr Parsons said Ms Williams have been knocked out cold by the huge blast.

He said: ‘I was told that she came around when she heard the phone ringing.’

An air ambulance took the two boys to hospital for emergency treatment at Southmead Hospital, Bristol

An air ambulance took the two boys to hospital for emergency treatment at Southmead Hospital, Bristol

Care home cleaner Lauren Collins, 29, who works together the boys’ grandfather said they were a pleasant family and the whole village was praying for them.

She said: ‘They had to place the two boys to sleep before they were flown to hospital – it’s just terrible.

‘I was driving past when there was an enormous boom I felt the vibration in my car.’

Next door neighbour Susan Morgan, 73, who wasn’t in at the time said: ‘They certainly are a lovely, lovely family. This is so sad for them but we’re just glad they are alive.’

Neighbouring homes and cars parked in the road were defectively damaged by flying masonry, wood and glass.

The local rugby club was opened for families evacuated in the aftermath of the explosion.

Neighbours claimed the roof was blown more than 40 feet into the air and the blast could be felt half a mile away

Neighbours claimed the roof was blown a lot more than 40 feet into the air and the blast might be felt half of a mile away

The blast is believed to be from the gas leak and safety engineers from a utility company were on the scene.

A South Wales Police spokeswoman said yesterday: ‘We can confirm the three people injured in the incident, a 31-year-old woman and two boys aged five and two all remain in hospital and are in critical but stable conditions.

‘The road remains closed and we continue to ask people to steer clear of the area.

‘The reason for the explosion is under investigation.’

South Wales Police confirmed today there as been no change in condition for the girl and her children and the investigation continues.

Neighbours pulled the family from the rubble before the arrival of the fire brigade, using a piece of timber from the roof to remove the fridge freezer from

Neighbours pulled your family from the rubble prior to the arrival of the fire brigade, utilizing a piece of timber from the roof to get rid of the fridge freezer from 

The Welsh Ambulance Service said: ‘We responded with five vehicles of the Hazardous Area Response Team, one rapid response vehicle, two emergency ambulances and one specialised medical team and we received the support of the Wales Air Ambulance.

‘One patient was transported by road ambulance to Morriston Hospital, Swansea, and two patients were transported by air ambulance to Southmead Hospital, Bristol.’ 

An on line fund for the family has been setup and a lot more than £9,000 has been raised up to now.

  • You can subscribe to the family fund on their JustGiving page 

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