The roofs of three Nelson houses were badly affected in the middle of the night when a blaze started in one of the properties and spread across to the others.
Nelson fire crews were called to Cumberland Street at just before 3am on Monday morning. They ended up with four fire engines there, joined by an aerial ladder platform – the sort of vehicle with a huge ladder which can be used to spray water from above the roofs.
It was around 7am which they finished dealing with the incident.
The fire started in the house on Cumberland Street, which was on the end of a block which actually goes up Rutland Street. That house was empty. The fire then spread to the roof of the next house on Rutland Street, which was an occupied property but there was no one in when the fire affected it. The fire then went along to the third property and affected the roof there, too.
To deal with the blaze, firefighters used four sets of breathing apparatus, three jets, lighting and the triple extension ladder.
In the end there was damage across all three. The roofs of two houses were completely destroyed and the first floors of these two were also severely damaged by heat, smoke and water. And their ground floors were also severely damaged by water. The third house had its roof affected by the blaze.
Fortunately, there was no one in the homes and therefore there were no injuries.
A fire service spokesman said: “The cause of the fire is not yet identified and is still under investigation.”
Firefighters attending the incident could see smoke rising from the roofs well before they got there.