Incident commander at the scene Alan Ashworth said the number of casualties had risen to “at least 10” – telling reporters at the scene they are “concerned” for three of these as they have “quite severe burns and lacerations”.
He said crews were initially called to reports of a blaze but when they arrived firefighters found a “number of people injured on the floor”, saying it was “obvious” there had been an explosion.
He said it was “fantastic” that people had gone to help and revealed that a man, woman and their adult daughter lived at the property.
Six fire engines were deployed to the scene and gas and electricity supplies were turned off at the house and four neighbouring properties.
Curzon Road, Whiteacre Road and Clinton Street were all closed and people were asked to avoid the area if possible.
A woman called Leanne, claiming to be one of the daughters of the man and woman who live at the house, told reporters she was in bed when she heard the explosion. She said she saw a house on fire but thought it was next door to her parents’ home.
Without revealing details she said two people escaped the blaze by jumping out of the window and one from the roof.
Leanne said her sister also lived at the property and she said she was “shocked” by what has happened and that her parents have “lost everything” in the blast.
A spokeswoman for North West Ambulance Service confirmed they were called at 5.07am and sent a “large resource team” to the scene.