Explosions at Adamstown unit fire

Fire crews work at the scene of the Cardiff fire. Photo: Glen Whitehead
Fire crews work at the scene of the Cardiff fire. Photo: Glen Whitehead

Firefighters from Lambton, Newcastle and Merewether stations were called to reports of explosions at an Adamstown unit on Thursday. Firefighters found a fire on the balcony in an air-conditioning unit. The fire had ignited several aerosol cans, causing the explosions. Firefighters contained the fire to the balcony, with only smoke damage to the unit.

On Tuesday night more than 35 firefighters from five stations fought an intense house fire at Cardiff. The first arriving crew from Cardiff found the entire house engulfed in the blaze. Residents told the crew that no one was inside the house, negating the need to put firefighters lives at additional risk by entering the premises.

Fire crews used hose lines to stop the fire spreading.

“The fire flashed-over while we were working down the side of the house, it blew out the eaves above our heads,”  Senior Firefighter Rob Murray said.

A flash-over is when gases released by super-heated materials accumulate. If the fire is hot enough, the gases ignite, causing an huge, rapid increase in fire intensity. The blast from a flash-over is often strong enough to blow out windows and doors, and, in this case, eaves.

Flash-overs are incredibly dangerous for firefighters. All firefighters are trained to use gas cooling techniques. This involves spraying short and regular bursts of water into the gas layer when working in a confined space to cool the gas.