Investigation underway after 20 firefighters called to Banchory blaze

The scene at Oak Tree Avenue, Banchory yesterday. Picture by Chris Sumner. Date 8/2/18

An investigation is under way into the cause of a fire which tore through the roof of an Aberdeenshire home yesterday.

Around 20 firefighters required breathing apparatus and thermal imaging cameras to deal with the blaze in the detached property at Oaktree Avenue in Banchory.

The street was cordoned off as the crews used hose jet reels to put it out.

Nobody was injured and it is understood the people who live in the timber-framed residence went to a neighbour’s house while it was dealt with..

Fire chiefs have confirmed an investigation into the cause of the fire is under way.

The charred remains of plasterboard and insulation from the house could be seen lying in the driveway.

It came just a day after the engineers from gas distribution SGN visited the property on Wednesday to switch off the gas supply after a carbon monoxide alarm went off.

They returned to the scene yesterday to cut the supply for a second time.

Gary McArthur, the fire service’s Portlethen station manager, said they stayed on at the scene to make the area safe.

He also said the blaze was “well-developed” and they are still looking into the circumstances of it.

Mr McArthur said: “There has been, within this estate, quite a well-developed fire within one of the detached dwellings.

“The cause is still under investigation and I can’t comment on that.”

Andrew Dyrda, who lives in Oaktree Avenue, said: “The fire must’ve started sometime between 7.30am. The fire engines were here just 8am.

“They used an axe and breathing equipment.”

One woman, who did not want to be named, said: “My husband got up this morning and he said ‘gosh, there are fire engines in the street’.”

A fire service spokesman said four appliances attended the incident at 7.36am and they received a stop message at around 11am.

Bradley Barlow from SGN said: “We were called to Oaktree Avenue in Banchory on Wednesday, February 7 following reports of a carbon monoxide alarm being sounded.

“As the provider of the gas emergency service in Scotland, our engineers attended the property to make it safe, which involved turning off the gas supply at the meter.

“We joined the emergency services at the property again, when we turned off the gas supply to the property again and made safe.”