Tortoise Blamed for Christmas Day House Fire in UK


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British firefighters have identified a suspect in a Christmas Day fire that destroyed a home in Essex County: a 45-year-old tortoise.

Investigators with the Essex County Fire and Rescue Service have traced the origin of the blaze to a heat lamp, which they believe was knocked over by the shelled reptile, says Captain Gary Wain.

 “The fire started after the tortoise knocked a heat lamp onto its bedding, which then caught alight,” Gary Wain, watch manager at the Great Dunmow Fire Station, said. “This tortoise has had a very lucky Christmas Day ― he is 45 years young and will now hopefully continue to live a long and happy life thanks to working smoke alarms.”

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