A LORRY driver did “exceptionally well” when fire engulfed the car transporter he was driving, says the man who led the operation to tackle the blaze.
Five Nissan cars were destroyed in the blaze on the southbound carriageway of the A19 shortly before 5pm yesterday.
Crew manager Adrian Emberson, from Seaham fire station, praised the actions of the driver, saying: “The driver did exceptionally well to get it into a lay-by beside the emergency telephone,” he said.
The cause of the fire is still unclear. “We believe it has started out in the engine compartment of the lorry and then spread out from there to the first car,” said crew manager Emberson.
“There was a total of nine cars on the lorry and five of them have been destroyed by fire.”
The original alarm call had not made it clear just what was involved.
“Originally, we just had it down as a truck on fire,” he said.
“There were two appliances from Seaham and one from Peterlee and I was in radio contact with my colleague from Peterlee – as he passed it on the northbound carriageway, he confirmed it was actually a car transporter.”
A Nissan spokesman said this morning: “We are today assessing the condition of four Nissan Qashqais, two Nissan Jukes and three Nissan Notes which were on board.”