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Insides gutted but structure survives

Despite being internally gutted by fire, a Martinborough house is still standing thanks to a quick response from local brigades.

The owner of the Dublin St house called 111 shortly after midnight on Sunday morning after a faulty panel gas heater caught fire.

Martinborough’s brigade responded before the incident was upgraded to alert level two, with more crews assisting from Greytown, Featherston, Carterton, Masterton, Remutaka, and Trentham.

A Fire and Emergency Spokesperson said it took the team of over 20 firefighters an hour to get the blaze under control.

“The owner said she had just arrived home – she managed to get out safely,” they said.

“You probably couldn’t tell the extent of the damage from the street. There’s just a bit of scorching on the roof, but it’s probably 60 per cent destroyed inside.”

The spokesperson said fighting the fire was a tricky job: it had spread into the low-pitch roof space, and firefighters needed to pull the ceiling down to extinguish it.

“It’s a good thing we arrived when we did because usually when we get to a house fire, it has already mostly burnt to the ground.

“We definitely saved the structure, but I guess it’s up to the insurance company to decide what to do with it now.”

Fire and Emergency [Fenz] is investigating what specific fault in the gas heater caused the fire, which is not being treated as suspicious.

Flynn Nicholls
Flynn Nicholls
Flynn Nicholls is a reporter at the Wairarapa Times-Age who regularly writes about education. He is originally from Wellington and is interested in environmental issues and public transport.

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