AN elderly woman ran screaming with her hair “burned to her skin” after a huge bang ripped through a home, leaving two injured.
A neighbour, who lives across the street from the gutted house in Portsmouth, witnessed the horror “explosion” and the woman screaming in the street.
She said: “I saw the explosion – I was having lunch in my house with a friend at the time. It was just horrible.
“There was a big explosion and I heard a woman screaming out in the street.
“I ran out and saw her – a neighbour had taken her out of the house – her hair was all burned, right down the back of her head.
“The son also came out and his hair was burned as well, but the worst was the mother.
“Her hair was all burned down to the skin.”
Fire crews, paramedics and police rushed to the property in Portsmouth, at 1.55pm on Friday – with witnesses claiming a “gas blast” caused the damage.
An air ambulance and South Central Ambulance Service’s (SCAS) Hazardous Area Response Team (Hart) were also scrambled to the scene, while surrounding roads were closed to allow firefighters access.
A SCAS spokeswoman said: “We were called today at 13:55 to Nelson Avenue to reports of a building explosion.
“We have sent to the scene our Hazardous Area Response Team four ambulance officers, two ambulance crews and the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance who have been working in partnership with Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire Service, Hampshire Police, power companies and local authorities.
“The ambulance teams have been assessing and treating two patients one male, one female, both adults, who are in a serious condition.
“Both patients have been treated at the scene by all our crews and taken by ambulance accompanied by the ambulance crew and air ambulance crew, to University Hospital Southampton.”
Local resident Paige Emery said the firefighters took about 20 minutes to put out the blaze.
She told the Portsmouth News: “I heard a proper loud bang it was so loud and powerful it shook my whole house.”
A Hampshire police spokesman said that road closures were in place.
He said: “We’re asking residents to please avoid the area at this time.”
Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service posted on Twitter: “Firefighters from Cosham, Portchester, Southsea, Havant and Emsworth are currently at the scene in Nelson Avenue, Portsmouth.
“Please avoid the area to allow our crews to work.”
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