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Family avoids harm as flames demolish home

BURNT TO THE GROUND: A Greycliffe family of seven lost everything in this house fire on Wednesday morning.
BURNT TO THE GROUND: A Greycliffe family of seven lost everything in this house fire on Wednesday morning.

TWO Greycliffe families have lost everything after a house fire on Wednesday.

Brad and Cheryl Lower had been looking after the house - which has been in their family for about 30 years - after Brad's mother moved to Brisbane.

Marie and Bevan Turner had been renting the house, with their five children, for about eight months.

The fire which burnt the house to the ground broke out on the Santa-Rosa property around 9.45am on Wednesday.

Maurie Cavanagh lives behind the property and didn't think much of the smoke to begin with.

"You don't think much of it, especially this time of year because someone is always burning rubbish," Mr Cavanagh said.

"I went to have a cuppa and when I came out again, it was still fairly black smoke, so I came down to have a look."

The fire was first spotted by passing motorists, who saw smoke coming from the property and called emergency services.

Cheryl Lower said it was a big shock when she got the call to say the house was on fire.

"I didn't expect it to be this bad," Mrs Lower said.

"We are eternally grateful no one was in there at the time."

The Turners first moved into the house in February.

"The police rang to see if anyone was in the house at the time, so I thought it must be bad if they were asking that," Mrs Turner said.

The Biloela State School teacher said the family had been in the area for about seven years.

"We have horses, so it is really hard to find a place like this to rent. It was just a godsend when Brad told us this place was up for rent.

"We have kids ranging from Year 11 to Year 4."

Mr and Mrs Turner surveyed the ruins of the house hand-in-hand.

"The people who first got here moved the boat and motorbikes out of the shed.

"One of the guys burnt his hands moving it."

Queensland Police and the Fire and Rescue Service are continuing their investigations.

Queensland Fire and Rescue thanked QR National, Halloran and Sons Earthmoving and Swartz Earthmoving for their supplies of water.


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