A mother and her two children escaped injury in a house fire in Mosgiel, Dunedin last night by getting out quickly, Mosgiel fire station officer Steve Turnbull said.

The fire, in Severn St, just after 7pm, was caused by a spark or embers from a wood-burner.

About half of the house, including the lounge and kitchen, was significantly damaged.

Mr Turnbull said the two Mosgiel appliances that arrived first did "an excellent job'' of containing the fire to the lounge and kitchen.


They were quickly joined by appliances from Roslyn and Lookout Point.

"Sometimes it's just an unfortunate mistake - it's nobody's fault.''

The family, who are now staying with a friend, did the right thing.

"The family evacuated the house quickly, and made the right choice in getting out and staying out,'' he said.

"They are very distraught. The kids are at an age where they haven't quite grasped it yet, but mum is pretty shaky.''

Mr Turnbull said the house had fire alarms, which had activated in the fire.

Last night about 9 o'clock firefighters were checking for hot spots.