Photo update: Road re-opens after car catches fire near Rushcutters Arms pub in Thorpe St Andrew

Car first in Thorpe St Andrew. Photo: Anna Blackett Car first in Thorpe St Andrew. Photo: Anna Blackett

Thursday, June 12, 2014
11:09 AM

A woman has described a sound like gun fire as a car caught fire on a busy road leading to Norwich city centre.

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Car first in Thorpe St Andrew. Photo: Anna BlackettCar first in Thorpe St Andrew. Photo: Anna Blackett

Drivers were warned to avoid Yarmouth Road in Thorpe St Andrew after the Volkswagen Golf caught fire, sending a large plume of smoke over the area, but the road reopened at 10.13am.

Anna Blackett, who lives near the scene, said: “I heard what sounded like gun shots - about four. I was wondering who was shooting at that time of the morning. I looked out of the window and could see grey, billowing smoke. The flames just kept coming.”

Firefighters were called about the blaze, on Yarmouth Road, at 9.05am, just five minutes after the start of a 24-hour fire strike.

A fire service spokesman said one crew from Hethersett was called to the scene, arriving at 9.18am. They were stood down at 9.21am.

Car first in Thorpe St Andrew. Photo: Anna BlackettCar first in Thorpe St Andrew. Photo: Anna Blackett

Yarmouth Road was blocked, and there were delays in both directions between the Thunder Lane junction and the South Avenue junction.

John Brunton, 65 from Brundall, co-owns River Bank Hair and Beauty with his son on Yarmouth Road where the car fire took place.

He said: “I was sitting waiting for the hairdressers to arrive and heard a bang and thought it was a car backfire. Five minutes later the hairdresser turns up and says a car is on fire. There was already an unmarked policeman there blocking the road off.”

He added: “The owner had smelt burning from under the carpet and saw smoke coming up. He pulled in a lay-by, just in time, as there was a bang and it then caught fire.”

Teacher Antony Little was a passenger in a car passing the scene, near the Rushcutters Arms pub.

He said: “We drove past it quickly because we thought it was going to explode.

“It looks like everyone is safe but it’s massive.”

He said the car had pulled over to a parking bay, all its doors were open, and it looked as if there were no casualties.

He added: “The fire is so big that people are worried it’s going to blow when it gets to the petrol tank, so people are trying to keep their distance and then speed past it.”

4 comments

  • Whiley Boy, I hope your comment was meant sarcastically; otherwise it was moronic. Taxis and buses are no less likely to catch fire than cars. In fact a bus burst into flames on the M11 just this morning!

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    moomoomoo

    Thursday, June 12, 2014

  • This is clear evidence of the impact that the rising popularity of Nigel Farage and UKIP. Events such as this would not be happening if people had refrained from voting for them. I live locally and have already heard several people blaming the fire on immigrants - disgraceful, especially as the World Cup starts today!

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    100% Norfolk

    Thursday, June 12, 2014

  • Another reason why cars should be banned. Use a taxi, or a bike or a bus.

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    Whiley Boy

    Thursday, June 12, 2014

  • When a car catches fire there are a number of potential explosion points - all the enclosed fluids such as brake, steering, battery acid, air conditioning - as they heat up they produce gas which could explode. In theory, the petrol tank could explode given the perfect airpetrol vapour combination. In practice, however, you're never going to get anything like the TV or films. The fireball would increase a bit, with some shrapnel going a short distance, but nothing to really endanger anyone unless they're close enough to already be being scorched by the heat.

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    So_Many_Haters!

    Thursday, June 12, 2014

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