Pride and joy up in smoke
FIRE threatened a block of units on the Esplanade at Scarness yesterday when a car that was being restored caught fire in a carport about 3.40pm.
Hervey Bay Police Sergeant Peter Bennet said the owner had stored chemicals and thinners in the car and was searching for something when he lit a cigarette and the vapours ignited.
The man jumped out of the car and ran to Sprake Real Estate next door to raise the alarm but could then only watch as two years of restoration work on the 1972 HQ Holden went up in smoke.
“He was extremely lucky to get out of the vehicle very quickly,” Sgt Bennet said.
Neil Probert, Hervey Bay Fire Station officer, said the carport and furniture next to the car also caught alight but firefighters were able to stop the fire spreading to the unit block.
“The car has been extensively damaged and there’s been a total loss for the furniture but no one was injured,” he said.
Senior Constable Mick Bleakley said the incident was similar to one last Friday when a man was doing some angle grinding on the roof of his car and a spark caught the car’s interior lining alight.
“It burnt the car out,” he said.
Snr Const Bleakley said the man pushed the burning car away from his house to stop the fire spreading.
Mr Probert warned people working on vehicles or around the house and using flammable materials such as petrol, turpentine, kerosene and methylated spirits not to smoke and to be careful with any source of ignition to avoid injury and damage to property.
Snr Const Bleakley said many people did handyman work on their cars or around the house but were not aware of all the pitfalls and some jobs were best left to professionals.