Taunton man burned in suspected gas explosion

The scene of the explosion in Taunton
Image caption Fire crews used a ladder to rescue a man from the first floor flat in Gaunton Close, Taunton

A man has been injured in a suspected gas explosion at a flat in Somerset.

He was rescued from the first floor by fire crews, who were called to Gaunton Close, in Taunton, on Friday night.

Paul Godwin, from Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service, said crews had been confronted with a "scene of devastation".

He added early indications showed there had been a build up of gas in the flat. The man was taken to hospital suffering from burns.

"There was a strong smell of gas when our fire crews arrived first of all. But the actual cause of the ignition is unknown at this time," said Mr Godwin.

"The flat downstairs is not habitable because of the damage to the flat above. The adjoining flats are habitable.

"At the time of the explosion we did evacuate four families until we could make sure there was no build-up of residual gas in the area."

A police cordon around the property remains in place while investigations are carried out.

Image caption The area around the property on Gaunton Close in Taunton remains cordoned off

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