FAULTY Virgin Media equipment was the cause of a fire at a house in Yate, a freedom of information request has revealed.

Firefighters were called to a house in Station Road at 2am on October 15.

They put out the blaze, but the house was left badly damaged and the owner forced to move out.

Several neighbours in the same road reported issues with their Virgin Media equipment on the same day.

One, Andy Kelly, described how sparks and flames shot from a cable and box across his living room. He lives about 200m from the house damaged by fire.

He had problems with his box on the same day and said his house might have burned down had he not been home.

“Me and my wife were in the kitchen and suddenly we heard a huge bang from the living room,” he explained.

“We came in and saw smoke coming from behind the tv.

“I quickly pulled the lead out of the box by the insulated end and then sparks and flames flew across my living room.

“After that I turned all of the electricity in the house off and cut the cable.

“My wife was really nervous because if we weren’t been home our whole house could have gone up in flames.”

Mr Kelly then explained that since the incident nearly two months ago, he has cancelled his Virgin Media subscription after nearly 20 years with the company.

“I contacted Virgin to inform them about what had happened and they were not very helpful at all,” he continued.

“That is why I made the decision to end my subscription with them.

“I don’t know for certain what happened, but Virgin just seem to be brushing the whole thing off.

“I have done everything to contact them and they haven’t been very forthcoming with news or any updates.

“They informed me on the Sunday that after what had happened that I would have to wait until Tuesday for someone to come out.

“Then on the day, nobody came and they had cancelled the appointment without letting me know.

“I am not looking for any financial gain out of it anymore as I have moved on to another supplier but I don’t think they should be able to brush it under the carpet.”

Avon Fire and Rescue Service confirmed in a freedom of information request that the main cause of the fire was a “fault in Virgin Media equipment or appliance”.

A Virgin Media spokesman said the firm was looking in to the situation after the fire.

“We are keen to discover more about these issues,” he said.

“Our customer care team is contacting those affected to learn about their respective concerns.

“We have also contacted the local fire service to ask for further information about the incident at a separate property and would very much like to discuss this with the affected resident.”