Probe after explosion

Burnt out caravan in a field adjoining Fairfield Road, Hardhorn
Burnt out caravan in a field adjoining Fairfield Road, Hardhorn
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AN arson probe is underway after a fire left a caravan wrecked.

Residents raised the alarm after they heard a loud bang and saw flames coming from a large caravan in a field off Fairfield Road, near Poulton, on Friday night.

An LPG gas cylinder had exploded inside the mobile home situated in a field off Puddle House Lane, between Poulton and Singleton.

Two engines from Blackpool Fire Station attended the scene at around 10pm and tackled the flames for around two hours.

No-one was injured.

Watch manager Ian Alder, said the explosion had been heard by local residents.

He said: “When we arrived the caravan was well alight because the LPG cylinder had blown up.

“Luckily the caravan was situated in a field so there was no risk of it spreading.

“And because the cylinder had exploded before we arrived we did not have to evacuate any local residents.”

The fire broke out in a field adjacent to a travellers’ site although the vehicle did not belong to those living on the camp.

Residents at first feared the explosion – which is believed to have caused around £2,000 of damage – was linked to the Cuadrilla fracking site in Singleton.

Mr Alder added: “When the alarm was raised I think the initial fear was the explosion had come from fracking.

“Then there was worry it was a blaze at the travellers’ site which would have been a concern as the flames spread very quickly.

“But it soon became obvious it was a cylinder in a large caravan in the adjacent field.

“The fire took hold very quickly and unfortunately the vehicle was completely destroyed as well as a couple of nearby trees.

“The owner was thankfully not in it at the time but she has been made aware of the incident.”

The cause of the fire is not yet known but an investigation is now underway.

Mr Alder said: “So far there are no obvious signs of how the fire started - there is nothing to suggest it was accidental. At the moment we are keeping an open mind and not ruling out any suspicious activity.”

Lancashire Police officers have been drafted in to assist with the investigation.