Multiple crews tackling fire at old care home near Weston
- Credit: Andrew Baxter
Firefighters are tackling a ‘large property fire’ near Weston-super-Mare this morning (Friday).
Crews are fighting the blaze at a former care home in Kewstoke.
Flames engulfed the vacant The Willows Care Home, in Court Road, at around 9am this morning.
A police cordon is in place and five fire engines from crews in Weston, Yatton, Clevedon and Kingswood are at the scene.
Firefighters were tackling the flames from inside the building, but were forced to evacuate after the roof collapsed.
Firefighter Pat Foley said: "The fire at the care home was well developed, and has involved virtually the whole building.
"We are hoping to be dampening down by the early afternoon.
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"Residents have been advised to keep their windows closed and to stay inside."
An Avon Fire & Rescue Service spokesman said: "Firefighters are on scene tackling the fire.
"Crews in breathing apparatus have been withdrawn from inside the building due to a partial roof collapse and are fighting the fire externally using three 45mm jets and two high pressure hose reels."
Western Power has temporarily shut off power to more than 30 homes in the area for safety reasons.
Bristol Water confirmed it dropped the water levels in Kewstoke due to the incident.
The company is warning people water to their homes may be slightly discoloured, and to continue to run the taps until it clears.
Witness Andy Baxtor said: "My son had just gone to catch the bus to work at about 9am, when he came bursting in and said the building's on fire.
"I went outside and saw the smoke from the old care home and called the fire service.
"It's not something you would expect to wake up to on a Friday morning.
"The former care home is deceptively large, it has 29 bedrooms.
"It was a care home when we moved in four years ago, but it's under new ownership and being done up now."