Huge ‘gas explosion’ destroys house in Kent as firefighters pull trapped survivors to safety and tackle huge blaze
- Four fire crews called to Mill View in Willesborough in Ashford at just before 8am
- Several people were trapped inside house before being freed, Kent Police said
- Officers are still trying to find out if anyone is missing or if there are casualties
A ‘gas explosion’ ripped off the front of a house today, sparking a huge fire as firefighters pulled trapped survivors to safety.
Several people were rescued from the £350,000 property, police said, and officers are now racing to identify if anyone else is missing.
Neighbours described how the explosion in Ashford, Kent ‘shook’ the whole street at just before 8am, with four fire engines call out.
Dramatic video shows flames and smoke billowing from the house as police urge passers-by to stay away.
A neighbour tweeted: ‘Huge gas explosion on my road, front of the house is completely gone’.
Paramedics and four fire engines were called to Mill View in Willesborough in Ashford, Kent just before 8am
Chantel Weller, who lives adjacent to the road where the explosion occurred, told the BBC ‘the whole house shook’.
She said: ‘We all felt our houses shake along this road. The whole house shook, and it felt like something had blown into the side of it.
‘People said they thought it might be a gas explosion, and it looks like the houses have been evacuated. The whole area is cordoned off.’
Members of the public have been urged to avoid the area and residents have been asked to keep their windows closed.
Ambulance service staff have been accessing patients at the scene.
Kent Police said: ‘Officers from Kent Police are currently working alongside colleagues from Kent Fire and Rescue Service and South East Coast Ambulance Service after being called to a report of an explosion in Mill View, Willesborough, Ashford at 7.57am on Tuesday.
‘A number of people were reported to have been trapped and they were freed by emergency services. Officers are working to establish if anyone else is unaccounted for.
‘Officers are advising people to avoid the area and asking local people to keep their windows closed.’
Dramatic video shows flames and smoke billowing from a house as police urge passers-by to stay away
A Kent Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: ‘Kent Fire and Rescue Service is at the scene of a house fire following a reported explosion in Mill View, in Willesborough, Ashford.
‘Four fire engines are in attendance.’
The South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAmb) confirmed that ambulance crews including a Hazardous Area Response Team are in attendance.
A spokesman said: ‘We are assessing patients at the scene and will issue further details when available.’
Gas engineers are being sent to the house.
Members of the public have been urged to avoid the area and residents have been asked to keep their windows closed