South West Wales

Glynneath street evacuated in house gas blast and blaze

Fire-damaged house in Merthyr Road, Glynneath
Image caption About 20 homes either side of the house in Glynneath were evacuated

A witness has told how a suspected gas bottle explosion at a house in the Neath Valley has led to all the homes in the street being evacuated.

Annette Whatley was in the garden of her home in Merthyr Road, Glynneath, when she heard the blast.

She said: "Within five minutes, the fire had gone right through. It was horrendous. The roof has gone now."

Some people were allowed to return home later on Wednesday night while others were offered accommodation.

Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service said five fire crews had dealt with the blaze.

There have been no reports of any injuries.

Mrs Whatley said neighbours had since contacted the couple who live in the house, who were away on holiday.

She said around 20 properties on each side of the road had been evacuated by the emergency services after the explosion, at about 1530 BST.

She said she had been allowed to stay in her home at the end of the street to look after an elderly couple who lived near the house where the blast happened.

She said: "The street has been evacuated. People are standing outside at the top of the street.

"The people [who live at the property] were just so lucky they weren't there.

"It was an explosion and it went straight through the house. The windows blasted through straight into the street."

The fire services said crews attended from Neath, Abercrave, Hirwaun, Glynneath and Pontardawe.

An appliance with an aerial ladder was also sent to the scene after the alert was raised.

Wales and West Utilities, which is responsible for gas connections, has engineers on their way.

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites