A Paisley mother who tore her sleeping child from her bed as a fire approached her bedroom begged people to come forward.
Claire McGinley was sleeping at her Chapelhill Road home in Paisley with her partner Mark and six-year-old daughter Everly when a neighbor knocked on her door to sound the alarm at 4.30am on Friday.
A fire, which had been deliberately lit, had completely engulfed their garden and was approaching the house when they were, luckily, roused from their slumber.
Claire said the windows at the back of the property – where little Everly slept – were closed so the family didn’t wake up to the smell or sound of the huge fire a few feet away.
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She told the Paisley Daily Express: âAt 4.30am we were woken up by our neighbor knocking on the door.
âMark saw the flames and yelled at me to grab Everly.
âI grabbed our little girl from her bed terrified and not sure where the fire was or what was going on and ran to our in-laws who happily live across the road.
âI thought the sound of the crackling flames was just heavy rain. But it turns out that it was a huge fire that engulfed our garden and headed for the house.
The blaze was so large it could be seen through Hunterhill and it was a man living further away who first spotted the flames and called the fire department.
He ran to Claire’s neighbor, where he believed the fire was, before the couple ran next door to wake the sleeping family.
âWhat they did saved us,â Claire said.
âAlex, our neighbor, thought so quickly and picked us up.
âWith the windows not open, I don’t think we would have noticed, that’s what’s scary.
“I try not to think about the what ifs because it’s too scary.”
The firefighters arrived quickly and managed to prevent the fire from reaching the house.
However, their garden and everything in it was destroyed.
Much to their shock, the family learned over the weekend that the blaze was one of two in the area.
Both had been started on purpose.
âWhat’s scary is that this person is still there and I don’t want that to happen to anyone else,â Claire added.
âIt’s honestly sickening and terrifying to think that someone went home after doing this and probably crawled into bed, that he could get up again today and decide to do it again.
âI personally went to the neighbors to see if they had CCTV. So far no one has anything.
“But it’s too big, too random and scary, someone has to talk or someone has to hear something.”
Meanwhile, Paisley police are asking anyone with information about the fire to come forward
A Police Scotland spokeswoman told The Express: ‘Police have been called to report a fire in the garden of a house in Chapelhill Road, Paisley.
âThe incident is being treated as voluntary and investigations are continuing.
âAnyone with information is asked to contact Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident number 0522 of Friday August 6th. You can also call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. “