ROKER EXPLOSION: Fundraiser launched to help those affected by suspected gas blast in Sunderland
A fundraiser has been set up by a Sunderland mum to help those affected by a suspected gas explosion.
Emergency services were called to a suspected gas explosion at an address in Whickham Street, on Tuesday afternoon.
Two men were rescued from the scene, including one from inside the destroyed property.
One of the men is currently in a critical but stable condition.
Around ten people living in eight Gentoo flats are believed to have been affected with temporary accommodation offered to some involved.
Now, mum Dawn Geddes, from Silksworth, has launched a fundraiser to help those affected by the blast after seeing the ‘devastating’ damage.
She said: “I was absolutely sickened by the incident, it was absolute carnage and there’s nothing left of the house.
"It really got to me so I decided to think of a way to help – we suffered from a house fire a few years ago and lost everything so I wanted to reach out to support others.”
Gentoo confirmed that two of its properties were damaged as an investigation into the cause of the blast continued this morning.
Following the blast, the housing association have provided hotel accommodation or helped to temporarily relocate evacuated residents, including the property next door which is privately owned.
Dawn, 37, who has six children, added: “We have also started to gather donations of household items and furniture as well as the fundraiser to help as much as we can.
"I think it’s important for the community and the city to come together when tragedies like this happen – it’s just awful.”
A senior firefighter has urged people to avoid the area – especially with Storm Dudley expected to bring high winds today that could scatter debris from the ruins of the building.
Steve Thomas, group manager for Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service said: "In terms of the property which was the main affected one, both the front and rear walls are missing from that premise, all the roof tiles have come from the roof - so that and the property below will be un-occupiable for a period of time.
"We will be cordoning off the area, but we would ask people to stay a nice, safe distance from it, particularly as those winds pick up and debris is likely to be released."