A family of five escaped a strong blaze that consumed their single family home in the Mingo Creek subdivision late Thursday afternoon.
Two adults, three children between the ages of 3 and 11 and their two pets escaped their home in the 1100 block of Delham Drive, Knightdale. The home was a total loss, officials said.
The fire started when the homeowner, who was trying remove an electric-powered children’s car from under his deck, decided to use a propane torch to melt the plastic, said Knightdale Fire Chief Tim Guffey.
Some melting plastic burned the man’s hands and he went inside to treat his injury, spending at least 10 minutes soaking them in cold water. When his wife went outside, Guffey said, the back deck was on fire.
Guffey said he is unsure how the blaze actually started although several flammable objects were nearby.
Neighbors said they heard explosions and that the homeowners had said propane tanks had caught fire.
Harvey Richardson, whose residence was damaged on the side facing the burned home, said he went outside after hearing a “pop and explosion ... louder than a firecracker” followed by the sound of fire trucks. Isaac Smalls, who lives across the street, reported hearing the same thing.
The Eastern Wake Fire Department, Wake-New Hope Fire Department, Knightdale Fire Department and Eastern Wake EMS all responded. The fire took about 20 firefighters about 30 minutes to put out.
“It got a really good jump on us,” Guffey said. “When I came out from the station we saw the column of black smoke.”
Responders arrived in time to save the neighboring houses, although both adjacent homes sustained damage like melting and buckling siding.