WORKERS had ‘a lucky’ escape when a catering van was engulfed by flames.

Emergency services were called to Teesside Park following reports of an explosion in the ‘hog roast’ van.

The fire in the catering van outside Laura Ashley erupted just before 11am but firefighters were soon on site to tackle the fire.

Ambulance crews were also on the scene within minutes and one woman was treated for minor injuries, believed to be a member of staff from The Roast Inn Sandwich Company.

Eyewitnesses reported hearing an explosion before the van was engulfed in flames.

Cleveland Police closed off roads into the site to enable emergency services to work safely and all the shops were evacuated of staff and shoppers while firefighters worked at the scene.

A Cleveland Fire Brigade spokesman said: “We got a call at 10.52am and were in attendance at 10.58am. The incident was a food van well alight.

“There were four 15kg gas cylinders involved which is why we were there for so long, because they’ve got to cool those down. We put a 400m cordon in place.

“We had eight firefighters in attendance, two wearing breathing masks. We used two jets and a ground monitor jet - which is basically placed on the ground and left to spray water.”

One eyewitness, Joanne Campbell said: "I can't believe they got out alive – they must have been so lucky to escape as the van went it so quickly."

A Cleveland Police spokeswoman said: "One woman has suffered minor injuries but no one else was injured.

"Roads into Teesside Park were closed and the surrounding areas were evacuated as a safety precaution.

"Officers would like to thank everyone for their patience whilst they dealt with the incident."