‘Horrific’ way twin girls died in Batlow fire

Twin girls Aisha and Lailani Ford, 3, were killed in the house fire in Batlow after reportedly dead-bolting their mother outside as she disposed of a burning pillow.

The girls had been playing with the pillow next to a wood burner in the front room of the family’s home before the smell of smoke caught the attention of their mother Tanyka, The Daily Telegraph reports.

Tanyka wrote on Facebook she was “gutted and hate myself for not being able to help more”.

“I don’t know how I will ever be able to comprehend how this could have happened please let this be a terrible mistake please tell me my babies okay,” she wrote

“Sadly as much as I pray nothing I say or do can bring back my babies.”

On the post, friends praised the “amazing mum” and shared their sympathies.

The grieving mum also thanked friends and members of the community for their support since the tragedy.

“The pain is unbearable. Thank you all for everything you have done big or small. It’s all so very much appreciated.”

RELATED: Twin girls killed in house fire in Batlow

Mum Tanyka Ford shared a heartbreaking post online following the death of her twin daughters.Source:Facebook

Aisha and Lailani Ford died after being pulled from their homes in Batlow.

Aisha and Lailani Ford died after being pulled from their homes in Batlow.Source:Supplied

Fire investigators and forensic services the scene on Mayday Rd. Picture: Mick Tsikas/AAP

Fire investigators and forensic services the scene on Mayday Rd. Picture: Mick Tsikas/AAPSource:AAP

Aisha and Lailani died after being pulled from the burning home by Fire and Rescue NSW crews, who forced entry in the burning home. Superintendent Bob Noble from the Riverina Police District said officers were looking at the case with an “open mind” as they established Strike Force Edmondson to investigate the circumstances around the fire.

Emergency crews were called to the home on Mayday Rd about 11am on Monday with reports of a house fire.

Crews had to force entry into the home through the dead bolted door, and found Aisha and Lailani unresponsive. The twins were found huddled together in an unconscious state holding each other’s hands. Despite efforts from first responders at the scene, they died at the scene.

“There must have been something else burning in the front room, Tanyka was screaming at them to unlock the door but they didn’t, the poor darlings would have been scared,” their aunt, Tammy Dubois told The Daily Telegraph.

“Our hearts are broken.”

Their mother and brother, six, were outside the home at the time of the fire, according to police.

Supt Noble says police would look at all sources of possible ignition, including the fireplace burning on the day.

“These are two little babies that lived a short life, and they died suddenly, unexpectedly and in horrific circumstances,” Supt Noble said on Tuesday.

Family members hug outside the home. Picture: Toby Vue

Family members hug outside the home. Picture: Toby VueSource:News Corp Australia

“It’s apparent the fire spread quite quickly as they quite often can … You’ve got vulnerable children in that situation, the outcome is quite often catastrophic.”

The girls’ mother and brother were interviewed twice on Tuesday as well as neighbours, first responders and their father, who police say was in Tumut at the time.

“The mother spoke to investigators last night. She was traumatised but did assist investigators in so far as she was able to,” Supt Noble said.

He described the Fire and Rescue NSW officers who pulled the girls out of the house as “heroic”, adding the family, the Batlow community and first responders were “emotionally shaken”.

“There is a community that is severely affected by the deaths of these two young people, they were babies, they were twin girls, and it’s a community that’s been through the devastation of recent times with bushfires,” he said.

“The people of Batlow are doing it very hard.”

With AAP


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