A DISABLED youngster died after a house fire thought to have started in his bedroom, an inquest heard.

Taylor Search, 10, was found in the toilet of a bungalow in Beambridge, Basildon, on May 1, but died four days later at Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Chelmsford Coroner’s Court heard the blaze probably started on his bunk bed just after 3pm as a result of “careless disposal of a smoking material or accidental misuse of a naked flame”.

Senior Essex coroner Caroline Beasley-Murray said Taylor had a medical condition that left him unable to walk, but that he would get around the house on crutches or by crawling.

Taylor’s family did not attend the hearing but Mrs Beasley-Murray told police and fire officers: “What a tragic accident. Please would you express sympathy to the family on their tragic loss?”

Assistant divisional fire officer Matthew Hare told the court a neighbour and Taylor’s mother, Helen, had attempted to rescue the youngster but were held back by the smoke.

He said: “The rapid development of the fire had made the conditions inside unmanageable.

“The heat was too hot and the smoke would have come down very low by this time. Anyone without protective clothing would have been overcome by the smoke or fire very quickly.”

Mr Hare said the initial 999 call was confusing and as a result it was not clear how many people were in the house.

He said during the call, Taylor’s mother told operators another youth had recently been at the house and said: “I don’t know what my son’s been doing in his bedroom.”

Mr Hare said Mrs Search was a smoker but kept her cigarettes and lighter in a small portable safe.

Taylor was found in the toilet, close to the front door, but it was not clear whether he had crawled there to escape the flames or whether he was hiding because he had done something naughty and could be “told off”.

Another boy, Taylor’s brother Liam, 13, received burns during the incident and Mr Hare said he may have been trying to save his brother.

Mr Hare said there were “still gaps in the circumstances” because fire officers had been unable to speak to Mrs Searcher.

He said: “The fire appears to have originated around the head of the bunk bed, most likely due to the burn patterns on the lower bunk.”

He added: “I believe the fire was the result of a careless disposal of a smoking material or the accidental misuse of a naked flame.”

Det Insp Anna Grainger, of Basildon CID, said an investigation found there were no suspicious circumstances.

The cause of death was found to be a brain injury caused by carbon monoxide poisoning, following a cardiac arrest.

Mrs Beasley-Murray recorded a verdict of accidental death.