House blaze guts kitchen

The fire on Robinson St destroyed part of the roof, having started in the wall cavity.

The volunteer fire brigade was called out to a house fire on Robinson St just after 12.30am last Wednesday, arriving to find a Housing New Zealand house ablaze.

Fortunately, the house was empty at the time, and a fire investigator said he would need to complete a full investigation but that his initial findings indicated that the fire appeared to have started in the wall behind the oven and spread up the wall cavity and into the ceiling.  There was nothing to suggest that the tenant of the three-bedroom house was in any way to blame, he said.

Due to the hot weather, neighbours were sleeping with their windows open and a number of them said they had woken to the smell of smoke.  One also said she also heard a loud bang shortly before the fire brigade arrived.

The Salvation Army were at the scene in the morning, offering support to the tenant who was understandably shaken by events.

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