A father of three is expected to remain in hospital for at least three weeks recovering from burns he suffered when fire ripped through his family's Dartmouth, N.S., home early Friday morning.

The 30-year-old man, his wife and three of their children escaped by jumping out a second-storey window in their townhouse on Princess Margaret Boulevard.

The man suffered "extensive burns" and other injuries while helping his family flee the fire, the Canadian Red Cross said in a statement.

The mother, who is 29, was cut and burned. The couple's two boys and daughter have bone fractures, some burns and abrasions.

Mattress at Dartmouth fire scene

This is a mattress that was found at the fire scene, a singed shirt can be seen at one end of it. (Elizabeth Chiu/CBC)

The family is temporarily staying in a furnished unit in the same Ocean Breeze subdivision. Volunteers are helping the family contact insurance adjusters and have helped provide personal care items and toys to help comfort the children, the Red Cross said.

Halifax Fire said Friday that the fire started in the furnace room and the father was injured there. An explosion blew windows all the way across the street.

Within hours, someone set up a GoFundMe campaign for the family and the Red Cross said neighbours and community groups are also offering help.

The Canadian Red Cross said water and smoke also damaged two other homes in the eight-unit building.

Members of the group met with the people who were displaced from those units and provided clothing and food to the two adults who live in one, and a family of four in the other.

On Saturday, Halifax Regional Police Supt. Jim Perrin said police responded to the fire, but didn't find any indications of criminal wrongdoing.

Dartmouth townhouse fire

Firefighters spent about five hours getting the fire under control. (Nikolas C Steen/Facebook)