Six caravans have been destroyed following a fire and explosions at a caravan park in Kilcoy, north-west of Brisbane.
The wind fanned the initial fire and enabled it to jump from van to van, and then witnesses report hearing something blow up. While the drama played out in a section of the park used by permanent residents, the speed with which the blaze spread will send shivers down the spines of everyone who stays in caravan parks.
While fire regulations are very tight in parks, the fact that caravans invariably carry gas bottles and are commonly parked very close to each other, the prospect of a disaster is always there.
On Saturday, three fire crews used foam to extinguish the Kilcoy blaze, with police and ambulance officers also in attendance. The ABC reports that the park was evacuated but there were no reports of injuries.
A Queensland Fire and Emergency Services spokeswoman said fire investigators would work with police to try to establish the cause.
Witness Leah Fischer said fire quickly engulfed the first van, and then the neighbouring vans were also ablaze within minutes.
“I have no idea what started the fire, all I know is it went quick,” she said. “It took a couple of minutes for the fire to grab hold of the second van and, once the second van went up it wasn’t long until the other vans also caught fire!”
Leah said that as soon as she started hearing explosions, she took cover.
“About 30 seconds prior to the really big boom I could hear constant high pitched squealing, hissing sounds, then an explosion,” she said. “It was burning extremely hot and I imagine the smoke was toxic.”
Before the blaze got out of hand, several people tried to put out the initial fire but were unable to make much of a difference.