Four-year-old twin girls were staying with their dad when the tragedy unfolded triggering a wave of tributes.
Tributes are flowing in northern NSW after a house fire killed twin girls at a property west of Byron Bay.
The four-year-olds were asleep in their father’s home in the early hours of Sunday morning when the fire broke out.
Emergency crews were called to a house on a multi-occupancy property on Mafeking Road shortly after 4am, following reports two children were suffering from smoke inhalation.
Police and paramedics attempted to revive the pair after they were pulled from the house, but died at the scene.
Floral tributes have been left at the property in Goonengerry and NSW Police, including arson squad detectives, have launched an investigation into the incident.
Members of the tight-knit community have taken to social media to express their grief.
Lara Rose described the incident as a tragedy.
“My deepest condolences to all impacted by this – particularly the parents,” she wrote on Facebook.
Others described it as heartbreaking.
“(It’s) so shocking and tragic, every parent’s worst nightmare,” D Lemma wrote.
Arson squad detectives remain on scene at the Goonengerry property as they try to work out exactly what happened.
Police Superintendent Dave Roptell said on Sunday that while the fire did not cause significant damage to the house, initial investigations showed it had smouldered and created a lot of smoke.
A woman was also treated for shock, police said.
Superintendent Roptell said the piano was in the same room as the two girls and was “fairly close” to where they were sleeping.
“It’s unbelievably devastating (for the community). It’s a tragic set of circumstances,” he told reporters.
“The police that turned up and the other emergency services who were there did an exceptional job and did try their best to save those poor young people’s lives”
Anyone with information about this incident is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au.
– additional reporting by Courtney Gould and Catie McLeod