A widow suffering from advanced cancer and heart disease may have died from the stress after a fire started close to her bed, an inquest heard on Tuesday.

At the Llandudno hearing a fire investigator warned coiled electrical extension leads could overheat if not unwound fully to avoid this.

Paul Jenkinson of North Wales fire service said there had been a “considerable” number of coils in at least five metres of extension cable at the home of 67-year-old Linda Brown, of Coronation Close, Bodelwyddan, making it similar to an electric heater.

The pensioner had been in an electrically-adjustable bed, plugged into the extension lead which had probably overheated.

Pathologist Dr Mark Atkinson told the coroner Mrs Brown had advanced cancer and narrowing of the coronary arteries. A stressful situation such as the fire might have been sufficient to cause a natural event.

Mrs Brown’s daughter found her in a smoke-filled room when she went to the house last November. Fire crews from Rhyl and Abergele attended and wore breathing apparatus to enter the property.

Mr Jenkinson said the mattress was fire retardant but had been smouldering.

Coroner John Gittins recorded a conclusion of accidental death. He said the fire contributed to the tragedy. A stress reaction may have been sufficient “to tip her over the edge.”