Five people had to flee as a fryer fire in a South Shields chip shop got out of control.
Two fire crews from South Shields and others from Hebburn and Wallsend attended the callout.
Watch Manager Kevin Williams said the fire started in a deep fat fryer, and quickly got out of control.
“The two employees left the property, shut the door and phoned the fire service.
“People in the property above were alerted by someone on site and they were evacuated before our arrival.”
An adult and two children got out of the flat upstairs before the fire brigade arrived.
Mr Williams added: “The shop itself sustained quite heavy fire, heat and smoke damage. The first and second floors suffered light smoke damage.”
Writing on the Gazette Facebook page, witness Shyna Noor said: “It was either the oil or oven... because cud see the fire from outside and then the fire must have been compressed so much that it was coming out the chimney.
“Don’t really know the ins n outs but my bros restaurant is next to it.. so soon as it happened we heard n went out to see ... wasn’t expecting it to be that bad!”