Flames four to five feet high shocked Edgerton residents and commuters this evening when they began leaping out of the pavement.
But it wasn’t earlier than planned Christmas entertainment in the leafy suburb but an electrical fault hidden under the pavement which left a manhole cover heated up to a whopping 350˚C.
The fire service received a call at 5.30pm and officers were soon on the way from Huddersfield Fire Station to monitor the scene until experts from Northern Powergrid could arrive.
The fault knocked out electricity supplies to nearby houses as well as the Ukrainian Club which was shrouded in darkness and the pedestrian crossing at the junction of Edgerton Road and Luther Place near the historic red tram shelter.
A female resident who didn’t want to be named said: “A friend of ours thought there had been a gas leak. There were flames four to five feet high leaping about. It was quite a sight though they seemed to die down quite quickly.”
Robin Ferguson, White Watch Commander at Huddersfield Fire Station, said: “Our control was told by a member of the public that they had seen fire coming out of the pavement.
“What happens is at this time of year you get an expansion and contraction of items under the ground and they form an arc which starts arcing. There’s an electrical short circuit. Our thermal imager registered the manhole cover at 350˚C.
“We are waiting for electricity cover. The fault has taken out the electricity supplies from several properties.”