ARSONISTS torched a garage containing three gas cylinders in Brierfield.

Fire crews from Nelson and Burnley were called out to Richard Street on Tuesday night just before 10pm.

When firefighters arrived, the garage was well alight so firefighters tackled the flames.

A thermal imaging camera was used and picked up three liquid petroleum gas cylinders inside the building.

Luckily they were not involved in the fire.

Toxic smoke poured from the building so crews donned breathing equipment and removed all the items from the garage.

Crew manager Dave Robinson, whose team spent around 45 minutes putting out the flames and making sure the area was safe, said: “The canisters could potentially have had very serious implications to our health and safety. The garage could have exploded.

“We have historically had issues with anti-social behaviour and fire setting in the garages.

“There were not any youths in the area during this fire, but it was started deliberately.

“The police attended and we are speaking to the local council with regards to security and access to the garages.

“We are having on site meetings to see what we can do to prevent this happening again.”

Crew manager Robinson said he also planned to speak with residents to encourage them to keep their garages locked and to advise them not to keep potentially dangerous items inside.

He said: “If you own or rent a garage please be mindful of the items that are stored inside and the potential they have to cause serious harm if involved in fire.

“Cylinders in particular are extremely dangerous. Also please take extra time and care to ensure your garage is secure.”

Police have launched an investigation with the fire service.