Fire rips through kitchen of home

‘An ac­ci­dent wait­ing to hap­pen’say res­i­dents

East Kilbride News - - NEWS - Ni­cola Find­lay

A fire which ripped through the kitchen of an East Kil­bride house on Bon­fire Night was “an ac­ci­dent wait­ing to hap­pen” say an­gry res­i­dents.

Neigh­bours in West­wood watched in hor­ror as smoke and flames bil­lowed from the ground floor of the Rock­hamp­ton Av­enue prop­erty just be­fore 6.45pm on Sun­day evening.

The owner of the ad­join­ing ter­race tried to tackle the fire him­self, fear­ing there was some­one in the house, af­ter spot­ting that a light was on.

Three fire engines raced to the scene and the street was closed off while fire­fight­ers tack­led the blaze.

But the coun­cil prop­erty, which was partly boarded-up, had been ly­ing empty for a cou­ple of days and no one was in­jured dur­ing the in­ci­dent.

Neigh­bours said they have spent months com­plain­ing to South La­nark­shire Coun­cil about piles of rub­bish and other waste strewn all over the prop­erty.

The next-door neigh­bour, who raised the alarm, told the News: “It was Bon­fire Night so there was a lot of noise but all of a sud­den I heard an almighty crash.

“I didn’t think it was a fire­work so I looked out the front, didn’t see any­thing, then looked out the back and saw the flames com­ing from what looked like the kitchen.

“I no­ticed a light on up­stairs and my first thought was that some­one was in­side so I grabbed basins of wa­ter and went out and tried to tackle it.

“A shut­ter on a back porch door seems to have been re­moved and there was a whole load of rub­bish in­side which was alight.

“I tried my best but I soon re­alised the flames were out of con­trol and were spread­ing fast so my wife phoned the emer­gency ser­vices.”

He added: “My main worry was that some­one was trapped or the fire would spread to the other prop­er­ties within the ter­race.”

Another neigh­bour said: “We have been com­plain­ing for months to the coun­cil about all the rub­bish and waste at this house and to be hon­est we all feared some­thing like this would hap­pen – it was just a mat­ter of time. Thank God no one was hurt, though.”

A spokesman for the Scot­tish Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice said: “Op­er­a­tions Con­trol im­me­di­ately mo­bilised three fire ap­pli­ances to the scene at Rock­hamp­ton Av­enue.

“Fire­fight­ers used pow­er­ful wa­ter jets to ex­tin­guish the fire on the ground floor.

“Crews left the scene af­ter en­sur­ing the area was made safe.”

Daniel Lowe, ex­ec­u­tive director of hous­ing and tech­ni­cal re­sources, said: “The coun­cil is aware of the cur­rent con­di­tion of the prop­erty and gar­den area and is ac­tively tak­ing steps to ad­dress this.

“The fire ser­vice were called to the premises to tackle a fire in the kitchen.

“This is the sub­ject of an on­go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion since the coun­cil had the prop­erty se­cured with metal shut­ters which were forced off.”

PC Lu­cie Black from East Kil­bride po­lice said the blaze is not be­ing treated as wil­ful fir­erais­ing at this time.

Grim sceneSmokestained walls and charred re­mains at the back of the prop­erty

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