A TOASTED sandwich maker sparked a blaze that destroyed a social club’s bar.
A fire brigade and police joint investigation have pinpointed the electric device as the culprit for the fire at Seaton Social Club, in Station Lane, Hartlepool, yesterday morning.
The overheating machine is said to have produced flames that ripped through the bar in the club’s lounge and left the rest of the building smoke damaged.
Fire crews from the town’s Stranton and Headland fire stations were able to contain the fire and save the building.
Noel Cornforth, of Cleveland Fire Brigade, said: “There is significant damage to the bar area and smoke damage to the rest of the building. We’ve carried out a joint investigation with the police and are satisfied that there are no suspicious circumstances.
“The cause of the fire was a toasted sandwich machine behind the bar.”
The Mail reported yesterday how club steward Jimmy Egglestone was in bed above the club when a fire alarm alerted him to the blaze at 6.40am.
He went downstairs to discover thick smoke coming from the bar area of the lounge and was soon on the phone to the emergency services.
Five fire engines carrying 30 firefighters spent around an hour tackling the flames before helping to ventilate the building to reduce the amount of smoke damage.
Police also closed off a section of Station Lane during the incident.