Large house fire in central Wellington

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Firefighters have been tackling a house fire on Abel Smith Street in central Wellington this evening.

The fire in the capital city’s CBD appeared to have been brought under control.

Abel Smith Street fire, Wellington.

Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

Dozens of people from nearby houses were evacuated. There were at least five fire trucks at the scene battling the blaze.

Neighbours said the house had been unoccupied for some time.

RNZ employee Shona Jaunas thought the building was unlikely to survive.

“They’ve put up now a huge cherry picker, which is probably about 20, 30 metres up which is trying to spray water on top of the fire.

“This building is gone, that’s for sure. They’re just trying to, I expect, stop the fire from spreading to other buildings around it.”

Part of the roof collapsed as firefighters targeted the eaves, while sparks from the fire were flying over the neighbouring houses.

Police were at the scene of the fire and said the Terrace Tunnel and Arras Tunnel would be closed and diversions put in place.

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Motorists were asked to avoid the area.

Police said they were notified of the fire at 6.10pm.

Abel Smith Street fire, Wellington.

Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

Abel Smith Street fire, Wellington.

Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

Fire at Abel Smith Street, Wellington.

Fire and Emergency crews at the Abel Smith Street fire in Wellington. Photo: RNZ / Ben Strang

Abel Smith Street fire in Wellington.

Photo: RNZ / Dom Thomas

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