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Retired GP dies in blaze in Pikes Crescent, Taunton
Updated 2:58pm Thursday 12th September 2013 in News
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- Firefighters discover the husband's body behind a door.
- Neighbour pulls disabled woman, 80, from blaze - her retired GP husband is stuck in his bedroom.
- FIrefighters called out to Pikes Crescent blaze 3.32am this morning, Thursday, September 12.
AN Avon and Somerset Police spokesman said: "At 4.05am we were informed by the fire service that there had been a serious fire at Pike Crescent.
"Unfortunatelly, a man has died and a woman was taken to Musgrove Park Hospital, Taunton, suffering from smoke inhalation.
"We remain at the scene and are working with the fire service trying to establish the cause of the fire."
A SPOKESMAN for Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service said: "A joint police and fire investigation is still continuing."
THIS is the bungalow where Dr Gamm lost his life in the early hours fire.
NEIGHBOUR John Burt said: "I heard a bang at about 4am and thought somebody was trying to get into my shed.
"I saw the smoke and flames coming out of the bungalow next door.
"Shirley dashed out of the door and I rang the fire brigade."
SHIRLEY Burt, who lives next door, was first on the scene after the fire broke out.
She said: "I looked out the window and it was all lit up with the flames.
"I ran through the back door and Barbara, who is disabled, was sitting inside the patio doors in the pitch black.
"I said, 'I've got to get you outside.
"She said, 'Geoff's in the bedroom but I can't open the door because he's behind it'.
"I got Barbara out with some difficulty before the firemen arrived."
A RETIRED GP has died in a blaze in his bungalow in Pikes Crescent, Taunton.
Dr Frederick Gamm – known to neighbours as Geoff and in his mid 80s – is believed to have already been dead when his body was pulled from his bedroom by firefighters.
Minutes earlier a neighbour managed to rescue his disabled wife, Barbara, who was treated in hospital for smoke inhalation.
Fire crews called out at 3.32am were greeted by heavy smoke logging and immediately set up searching for Dr Gamm, who was “unaccounted for”.
Police and ambulance personnel were also on the scene, with half the bungalow well alight and the fire spreading to the roof space.
The fire was out by 4.14am, when crews using thermal imaging equipment checked for hotspots.
The stop message was issued at 5.20am, with 50% of the building damaged by fire and the rest severely damaged by fire and smoke, and 20% of the roof space damaged.
Crews remained on the scene to damp down and assist a fire investigation.
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