VIDEO: Forty firefighters tackle blaze in Gulval near Penzance
At least five people including two children had to be evacuated from their homes after a "signifcant" house fire broke out in Gulval last night.
Forty firefighters and four fire engines from Penzance, St Just and St Ives, plus supporting units from Launceston, Falmouth and St Dennis helped tackle the blaze.
Cornwall Fire and Rescue service received five calls just after midnight and on arrival crews found one semi-detached property of two floors with the roof well alight.
Police and an ambulance were on scene but there was no one in the house, on Seaview in Gulval Churchtown, at the time of the fire and it is thought the house is a second home.
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Mum Dawn Kingston, with children Libby and Camilla and husband Dan, were evacuated from their house next door to the blaze.
The neighbour on the other side of the house also left her property and was taken in by neighbours.
Mrs Kingston said: "My husband heard crackling and saw flickering out of the window – we have got gas bottles out the back.
"The wind was coming this way and it looked as if it was coming towards our house. We were worried about our neighbour on the end."
She said it was very lucky that there was no one in the house.
Firefighters took five hours to extinguish the fire, which is believed to have been caused accidently and was confined to one building.
Mark Salter, station manager for Truro fire station who was called out to the blaze as he lives nearby, said: "As we approached we came via Tesco and along Jelbert Way. We could see at that point that it was a significant fire.
"At that stage we requested four engines because it was going to require a number of fire engines.
"With any property that's attached there's a very real risk that the fire could spread naturally across."
Mr Salter said the firefighters had acted quickly to get the fire under control from the outside so that other team members could enter the property using breathing apparatus.
"We risk our lives in a calculated manner to save saveable property. This was saveable property," he said.
"In my opinion it was an excellent response from the team. It could have been a different story if people were in there."