Fire forces 500 to flee their homes

Neighbours Tom Hutchinson, 50, and Martin Allchurch, 21, of Junction Road, Stainforth, were evacuated from their homes after an acetylene explosion in a nearby shed. Picture: Liz Mockler D8803LM
Neighbours Tom Hutchinson, 50, and Martin Allchurch, 21, of Junction Road, Stainforth, were evacuated from their homes after an acetylene explosion in a nearby shed. Picture: Liz Mockler D8803LM

AROUND 500 residents were evacuated after gas cylinders started to explode when a rubbish fire got out of control.

Four fire engines attended the incident in Stainforth after a large rubbish fire spread to a shed and adjacent building filled with gas cylinders.

Several cylinders, including an acetylene cylinder, were discovered at the Brunswick Square site and residents from the surrounding area were evacuated.

Firefighters and police established a 200m exclusion zone around the incident as a precautionary measure.

No one is believed to have been injured in the fire and an investigation will be carried out to determine the cause of the fire.

Residents have spoken of their shock following the incident around 9pm on Friday night.

Martin Allchurch, 21, of nearby Junction Road said: “I was sat watching TV about 9pm and then we just heard a massive cracking noise and the entire flat was shaking at first we thought it was an earthquake, we didn’t really know what to think.

“Then when I went outside I saw the flames and everyone was stood in the street, kids were crying and people were in shock.

“Luckily I don’t think any damage has been caused to our house.”

Martin, who works in catering and his girlfriend Rebecca Morgan, 19, who works at Next had to go to a nearby neighbour’s house and were not allowed back in their home until around 1am on Saturday morning.

Tom Hutchinson, 50, unemployed of Junction Road added: “Me and my son Thomas were walking back from the shop and we saw a firework fly over and hit a caravan then all hell broke loose, it was like being in a war zone, we could feel the house shaking, it was a real shock.”

Crews from Doncaster, Edlington and Thorne fire stations attended the incident and used hose reels and jets to cool the cylinders in a bid to prevent any further explosions.