STAFF were evacuated from a Southampton petrol station when a car caught fire on the forecourt this afternoon.

The driver of the dark blue Ford Mondeo told the Daily Echo how he had ironically pulled over into the petrol station in West End after his engine cut out not realising the car would then catch fire.

He alerted staff at the Applegreen petrol station, in Swaythling Road, who quickly got people away from danger in case any flammable liquids ignited.

A fire crew from Hightown put out the fire using a hose and two breathing apparatus following the call shortly after 2.50pm.

Daily Echo:

Picture by Joel Kidd

“I was worried about the petrol, I was worried about the staff,” said the 40-year-old driver from Portswood, who works for a timber merchants and was driving down Swaythling Road at the time of the incident.

“Ironically I wouldn't have pulled into a petrol station if there had been smoke coming out.

“All the staff were so brilliant - really quick to react and make everyone feel comfortable and safe.”

He said firefighters had told him the cause was an electrical fault.

The company car's engine was badly damaged and he said it was a write-off.

Staff did not want to comment and Petrogas, who own the petrol station, did not respond to the Daily Echo's request for comment.