Gearbox explodes at car blaze

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FIREFIGHTERS faced a dramatic scene which looked “like Bonfire Night” after the gearbox of a car which was on fire began to explode.

Crews were called to Lancaster Avenue in Marsh Green at around 11.45pm on Saturday after reports a car had been set ablaze outside a house.

They found a dark blue Ford Focus estate well alight, although initial reports that someone was trapped in the vehicle proved to be inaccurate.

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus tackled the flames but found their task made more difficult as the car’s gearbox was made from magnesium.

Crew manager Simon Connor from Wigan fire station said: “When we arrived there was no-one inside but the magnesium gearbox started to explode. Molten magnesium was flying off in all directions.

“The fire didn’t go anywhere but it was very dramatic, it was like Bonfire Night.”

The car was completely destroyed in the incident, which is being treated as suspicious by Greater Manchester Police (GMP).