Auckland house fire claims fourth victim

1:41 pm on 20 January 2017

A father who was seriously injured in a house fire last month, which killed three members of his family, has died.

Kailesh Thanabalasingham

Kailesh Thanabalasingham Photo: Facebook / NZ Sri Lanka Forced Migrants' Support Group

A five-year-old boy, his mother, 39, and grandmother, 66, were killed in the fire in the Auckland suburb of Flat Bush on 22 December. An 11-year-old girl and her grandfather man escaped the fire.

Kailesh Thanabalasingham, 47, has been in critical condition in Middlemore Hospital since the blaze.

Family friend Deborah Manning confirmed Mr Thanabalasingham died this morning.

She said he deteriorated yesterday and family and friends were called to his bedside.

Mr Thanabalasingham was a much respected member of the Sri Lankan community and was on the Refugee Council.

Ms Manning said Mr Thanabalasingham was a very principled man.

"He was a dear colleague and friend to me and a family man.

"This is a very big loss to the human rights community in New Zealand."

The Fire Service will be ruling the cause of the blaze as undetermined, fire risk management officer Phil Faidley said.

He said he was confident he knew how the fire started but there was not enough evidence to prove that conclusively.

The scene of the fatal fire in Flatbush in Auckland, which claimed three lives.

The home, in a new subdivision in Flat Bush in south-east Auckland, was gutted by the blaze Photo: RNZ / Joanna McKenzie