Firefighters will remain overnight at the scene of a garage blaze to cool  down several volatile acetylene gas cylinders.

They were very close to a car found on fire inside the Croxdale Fast Fit Autocentre in Croxdale, between Spennymoor and Durham.

Fire crews were alerted by police shortly after 8pm and quickly extinguished the vehicle. There was no sign of a forced entry.

Five crews and an aerial ladder platform attended due to the danger posed by the cylinders and initially householders living within 200 metres of the garage were warned they may have to evacuate.

The A167 - which runs right past the garage - has also been closed and will not re-open until later tomorrow (Wednesday, April 31) morning. Diversions are in place.

Last night a spokesman for Durham Fire Brigade said a crew will remain cooling and monitoring the cyclinders for 24 hours and the situation will be reasessed in the morning.

Earlier, Chief Superintendent Graham Hall said: "Our advice to people in the area is to stay indoors. The fire is being brought under control.

"Once the fire has been extinguished we will begin a joint investigation with the fire service to determine the cause of the fire."

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