Neighbours reported hearing screams from a blazing home in Middlesbrough.

Crews went into the inferno in Talbot Street, Middlesbrough, which was so intense the plaster on the walls of the terraced house had melted in the heat, a ceiling had collapsed and flames were shooting one metre out into the street.

Fortunately, they found no one in the blaze, not that anyone could have survived the fire as it raged on the furnished first floor of the building and tore through the house roof, Station Officer Ron Carr said.

"We committed four men in breathing apparatus straight away because of the life risk. The scream has been heard from someone in the property when the fire has started, probably at the rapidity with which it has spread," he said.

"It was potentially a very nasty fire. When we turned into the street the flames were licking one metre across the street from a first floor window.

"There had been a rapid build up. It had taken the plaster off the walls and a ceiling had dropped down, and it was into the roof space."

He added: "Any fire which gets into the roof space is always awkward."

The house was unoccupied but crews found evidence of drug making equipment on the ground floor.

Smoke from the fire, which happened on Monday night, seeped into the house next door and a car parked outside was damaged as glass from an exploding window and other debris from the blaze rained down on it.