A boy is nursing serious burns after a fire razed five timber houses at Gakoromone market in Meru town on Tuesday evening.
The fire, which started at around 8.30pm, is suspected to have been caused by a candle which was left burning in one of the houses.
Residents said the boy had been left sleeping alone in their house when the fire started.
They said they suspected that the burning candle fell on a mattress causing the fire.
Residents managed to rescue the injured boy, aged about two years, and rushed him to Meru Teaching and Referral Hospital while another child was also rescued from the fire unharmed.
And in a strange twist, residents cheered and clapped as the Meru fire fighters arrived within few minutes of being called and quickly put out the fire before it spread to other houses.
Mr Martin Mwenda, a rescuer who called the fire fighters, said residents were pleased by the quick response.
“I heard screams and saw smoke billowing and called the fire fighters. They took about three minutes and we welcomed them happily. They have managed to put out the fire,” he said.
Mr Mwenda said they suspect the boy’s mother had left the house for some errand when the fire broke out.
“He is badly injured and we pray that he gets well,” he said of the boy.