'Explosions' wake Waihi residents

MATT BOWEN
Last updated 11:15 04/07/2012

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Waihi residents woke to 'explosions' early this morning as a garage was destroyed by fire.

Firefighters were called to Union St after reports of a blaze.

Neighbour Percival McTurk was half awake when the first explosion shook him.

"I thought it was someone closing a car door and the rattling of a garage door going up, but it was taking a long time to go up,'' he said.

"Then I looked out the window and there were flames coming up about 15 metres high. There's a tree there with no leaves on it and it was going over the top of it and that tree's about 15 metres high.''

He said several other "very loud'' explosions followed and he speculated paint cans or gas bottles were to blame.

"Looking from the road [this morning] the front of the house is okay but at the end of the driveway the old garage burnt to cinders - there's nothing left.

"It took about 10 minutes before the fire engine came but it didn't take them long to put it out.''

Firefighters stayed for another hour dampening down hot spots..

Did you see the fire? Send photos or video to matt.bowen@waikatotimes.co.nz

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- Waikato Times

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