Accidental fire causes major damage to cars and neighbouring properties

PUBLISHED: 07:00 27 September 2019

Gordon Youngs smart car caught fire outside his home on September 18.Picture: Lily Newton-Browne

Gordon Youngs smart car caught fire outside his home on September 18.Picture: Lily Newton-Browne

Lily Newton-Browne

A car 'explosion' caused extensive damage to two homes in Clevedon.

Gordon Young's smart car caught fire outside his home on September 18.Gordon Young's smart car caught fire outside his home on September 18.

Gordon Young's Smart car burst into flames in his driveway on September 18.

Multiple fire crews attended the scene at Chipping Cross, which could see both homes needing up to six months' worth of restoration as a result of the blaze.

Gordon said: "I went to move my Smart car out of the garage, put the ignition on, and I noticed smoke pouring from the bonnet.

"I grabbed a fire extinguisher, but it was just getting worse.

Chris and Debbie Starrs home was damaged by the smart car fire.Picture: Lily Newton-BrowneChris and Debbie Starrs home was damaged by the smart car fire.Picture: Lily Newton-Browne

"I quickly decided to move the car, and just after I got it halfway up the driveway, it exploded.

"The fire destroyed the car, and I was a bit upset after it happened.

"My nephew said I can't stay at my home and I should stay with him, but I didn't want to impose."

Gordon moved to Clevedon from Longwell Green 21 years ago, after his wife died.

The damage caused to Debbie and Chris Starrs home by the fire.Picture: Lily Newton-BrowneThe damage caused to Debbie and Chris Starrs home by the fire.Picture: Lily Newton-Browne

The 85-year-old added: "Debbie and Chris Starr welcomed me when I first arrived to the neighbourhood, and I couldn't have asked for better neighbours.

"Those two are like family to me, they are lovely people."

Debbie arrived home after a phone call from her daughter alerted her to the fire.

She said: "Becky rang me and told me not to speed home and not to panic.

Gordon Youngs solar panels had to be covered after the fire.Picture: Lily Newton-BrowneGordon Youngs solar panels had to be covered after the fire.Picture: Lily Newton-Browne

"When I arrived, there was smoke coming out of the loft, and the fire spread quickly because our house is built with timber frames.

"We've lived here 33 years and it doesn't feel like my house anymore."

Chris' BMW was also damaged in the fire, which melted the front of his car and wing mirror, and the vehicle is being repaired.

The pair await a restoration project to their roof and upstairs bedrooms as a result of damage from the blaze.

An Avon Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: "Crews from Weston, Avonmouth, Clevedon and Nailsea stations were called to a car fire which affected two homes.

"Two firefighters in breathing apparatus used two high pressure hose reels to extinguish the fire.

"Gas and electrics were isolated at the houses and crews used a ventilation fan to clear smoke from the properties.

"Ambulance crews were also in attendance and the cause is thought to be accidental."

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