Tenants flee burning house
People renting a house in Kekerengu that was engulfed by flames early this morning managed to get out safely before firefighters arrived.
The fire gutted the property on State Highway 1 between Ward and Kaikoura just after midnight.
Ward volunteer firefighter Larnce Wichman said people who lived in the house were at home when the fire started, but managed to get out safely.
The occupants, who rented the house, would have lost everything, Wichman said.
Two crews from Ward Volunteer Fire Brigade were at the scene first and were later joined by Seddon volunteer firefighters.
Sourcing water was initially a problem as the Ward crew had only one tanker and a fire truck, but firefighters managed to contain the blaze after Seddon firefighters arrived, Wichman said.
''We had the brunt of the fire toned down within 30 minutes,'' he said.
Crews surrounded and doused the building, dampening down the area before leaving just after 5am, he said.
Some of the roof was removed to aid ventilation.
Fire investigators are looking into the cause of the blaze.
The Marlborough Express