Mum who poured petrol on bonfire to keep warm left with third-degree burns

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    A mum who threw petrol on a bonfire to try and stay warm quickly regretted her decision when it exploded – leaving her engulfed in flames with horrific third-degree burns over almost half her body.

    Unfortunate Elba Hernandez, 44, had been building the bonfire alongside her 14-year-old niece Naydelin Medina before the terrifying ordeal left her in an induced coma, wrapped up in bandages and on an oxygen machine.

    Heroic medics who battled to save her life have described her survival as a “miracle” after she was woken from the coma and raced to surgery.

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    Young Naydelin, who suffered second-degree burns but luckily had her back to the explosion, is now getting help from a counsellor about what she witnessed.

    The traumatic incident, in New Jersey, US, has left Elba’s family with an eye-watering bill worth up to $100,000 (£89,000).

    Her construction worker husband Marco Hernandez, 50, daughter Angeli Hernandez, 20, and son Marcos Hernandez, 13, have shared the unfortunate tale in the hope of receiving donations to help them out.

    Angeli explained: "My mum was trying to make a bonfire in the backyard. She was using gasoline to light it.

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    “She used too much of it, it was already on and she added more and it exploded…

    "It was third-degree burns on 45% of her body. Her lungs were damaged because she breathed in too much smoke and the smell of gasoline got into her lungs.

    "The doctor said we had to have faith for a miracle to happen, she shouldn't be alive right now. She's lucky.”

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    Angeli, who works at a casino, received a call telling her what had happened while at work and immediately rushed home to find her mum being lifted into a helicopter.

    She explained: "I was at work, I got the call saying she'd had an accident so I rushed home. It was scary when I got the call, I don't even know how I made it home…

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    "Her face was all covered in smoke and her body was wrapped in bandages.

    "It looked bad, it was devastating. I couldn't imagine it, I felt like it was a bad dream and I'd wake up tomorrow and my mum wouldn't be in the hospital."

    The GoFundMe page is currently on ten percent of its final target.

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