Neighbours shocked after two children die in Christchurch house fire

Neighbours of two Christchurch children who died in a house fire in Burwood on Tuesday night are shocked at their deaths.

Three fire crews were called to the Vivian St home at 10:45pm. The children's father and two others managed to escape, but a nine-month-old and an eight-year-old didn't survive.

Neighbour Raymond Smith says he feels gutted.

"I heard all the sirens and I heard some screaming and I decided to come down and that house down there was on fire," Smith told Newshub.

By dawn and for the rest of the day, people were laying flowers and paying their respects.

Burwood resident Andre says it's a "very sad" situation.

"The first thing in my mind came up was what can you do? [It's] sympathy."

Fire and Emergency assistant area commander Mike Bowden says they're still confirming how the fire started.

"One child was rescued by firefighters during search and rescue operations. Tragically, this child subsequently passed away. A further deceased child was located in an unsurvivable bedroom."

The 9-month-old was found in a bedroom and the eight-year-old at the doorway, near where the fire started.

"It points towards that, that's still part of an ongoing investigation," Bowden says.

Smoke alarms helped save the three other lives.