An “out-of-control” blaze at a house in Herne Bay yesterday evening (April 2) has left a family homeless. Five fire engines arrived at the house in Stanley Gardens at around 5.50pm to find the ground and first floor “severely damaged”.
Firefighters used breathing apparatus, hose reel jets and a ventilation fan to extinguish the blaze and clear smoke from the property. The family that lives in the house has had to be rehoused as a result of the fire. The incident was declared over shortly before 7.15pm.
Neighbour Sue Clowes, who lives next door in a semi-detached house, said she was eating her dinner with her husband Terry when the blaze started. The mother-of-three said:
“The fire started at around 5pm, it was terrifying. One minute we were sitting down, eating our tea and the next minute smoke starting to come into our house. Soon after, we could feel the heat of the fire in our living room. I called 999 to report the fire, and they said they had had a couple of calls already. It all happened so quick – the fire was out-of-control and unpredictable. The heat was so hot and the next thing, our back windows started to crack. We grabbed our two dogs and got out. It was petrifying.”
Mr and Mrs Clowes put the dogs in the car and waiting outside for the blaze to be dealt with. Mrs Clowes said:
“We waited outside for around four hours and the not knowing what was going to happen was the worst thing. We thought we were going to lose our home. We’ve had a lot of smoke damage upstairs, one of our bedroom walls is black and our back windows have cracked. The whole thing has been our worst nightmare.”
It is not yet known how the fire started.