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Boy (2) burns to death in caravan blaze

A TODDLER died of burns when he was trapped in a blazing disused caravan where several other children were playing.

Michael Mongan (2) was trapped inside, but other children miraculously escaped from the massive fire yesterday.

The boy's sister and others rushed to the scene near Dunsink Lane in Finglas but attempts to save Michael failed.

Witnesses said that the little boy stood “no chance”. He was paralysed by fear when the fire went up, said one onlooker.

Gardai are investigating, but a spokesman said they are treating it as a “personal tragedy”.

One local woman who knew the dead boy said he was “always playing around the place and he was such a lovely child”.

But complaining about the lack of services in the area, she added: “This was an accident waiting to happen.”

It is understood that Michael and four older children were playing when the fire started in St Joseph's Park in Finglas. The other children, aged five and six, managed to escape the blaze but Michael became trapped.

Witnesses have said that rescue efforts failed because the toddler was so scared. Fire and ambulance crews rushed to the scene but Michael was pronounced dead at hospital.

His parents Anne Marie and Martin have been left shocked and devastated by the tragedy.

Family members of the other children have said it is a miracle that only one life was lost.

John McDonagh, whose son ran from the fire, explained that he was among a group of people that tried to rescue Michael.

“There are no working hoses up here to try and put the fire out. There were four other children playing in that caravan and it could have been far worse.

“All that was left was the chassis of the caravan and poor Michael's body in the corner.

“I can still taste the smoke in my mouth. I have never seen anything like it and I hope I never see anything like it again.”