Row of houses ravaged in blaze

Homes evacuated: The aftermath of the inferno in Toll Bar.
Homes evacuated: The aftermath of the inferno in Toll Bar.
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SEVEN people have been left homeless after a fire ravaged a row of houses in Doncaster.

Fire crews battled for nearly five hours to deal with the blaze in Toll Bar which kept one of Doncaster’s main roads closed until well into yesterday morning.

Firefighters were called out at around 2.30am and when they saw the extent of the blaze, immediately ordered six houses on Askern Road to be evacuated because of concerns the fire could spread.

Officers at the scene said a fence had caught fire and the blaze spread to an expansion joint between the two nearby houses and sent flames shooting up to the roof spaces.

When crews arrived both roofs were engulfed in flames.

Two adults and one child were in one of the houses and two adults and two children in the other.

They all got out unharmed, but firefighters warned they feared the two worst affected houses may be uninhabitable because of the serious damage caused to roof joists.

The A19 was sealed off while the fire crews battled the fire, with three fire engines initially in the road.

The fire service did not leave the scene until 7am and the road could not be re-opened until 10am. Experts from Doncaster Council’s dangerous structures team have been out to examine both houses and have taped them off because of concerns over safety.

Officials have not ruled out demolishing the houses following the blaze.

An investigation into the incident is now under way by police and the fire service.

A police spokeswoman said: “It is believed that the fire started in the garden of the premises and spread to a fence then up into the roof of two houses on the road.

“The occupants of the houses were evacuated while the fire service checked for any structural damage to their properties. The road was closed around 4.30am and reopened around 10am.

“Nobody was injured. At this stage it is not thought that there are any suspicious circumstances, and police and fire service are continuing the investigation.”

Housing bosses have taken action to find alternative accommodation for one of the families in the house.

A spokesman for St Leger Homes, which managers Doncaster’s 21,000 council houses for the local authority, said: “We have arranged local temporary accommodation for the family and understand that the occupant of the other property is making their own arrangements.

“We will support the emergency services as much as we can in their investigation of the fire.”