Car fire at Sunderland house 'treated as arson' say police
Police have launched an arson investigation after a car exploded outside a house in Sunderland.
It happened outside a property in Leechmere Road in the Hill View area of the city at about 9.50pm on Tuesday.
The black VW Golf had been destroyed by the fire, with its windows blown out.
Shattered glass surrounded the vehicle.
Fire officers and police were on the scene quickly to deal with the incident.
Two appliances from Farringdon dealt with the blaze.
It is not believed that anyone was injured.
A spokeswoman for Northumbria Police said today: "The fire is being treated as arson."
The car remained on the drive way of the semi-detached house this morning ahead of recovery.
Damage was also caused to the property detached from the home.
Neighbours spoke of their shock at the incident.
Witness Ian Maggiore, who lives opposite the house and took pictures of the scene just after the explosion happened, said: "It was on the drive.
"We heard at least three explosions and saw the flames across the road.
"My wife called 999 and the fire brigade came very quickly and had got it under control within a minute.
"The homeowners must have been out as we could not see anyone around after."
One woman, who lives doors away from the house, said: "I was sitting watching TV and just heard two bangs.
"We rang 999.
"People were out in the street straight away then you saw the bushes in the garden of the house had caught fire.
"The fire brigade were here really quickly and managed to put it out."