HAD Ryan Walsh not been woken by the sound of motorbike fuel igniting, neither he or his housemates Naomi Tatum or Andrew Brooker may be around to tell the story.

Standing out the front of the charred and gutted home on Blackbutt St, Byron Bay, Mr Walsh said he could remember seeing the flames shining through his curtain just after 2am on Tuesday morning.

He said he opened the front door and saw three motorbikes alight in the carport, before running back inside to wake up his housemates.

"Within a couple minutes of us all getting up and out of there the whole house was completely engulfed," he said.

LUCKY TO BE ALIVE: Ryan Walsh, Andrew Brooker and Naomi Tatum. In the early hours of Tuesday morning they escaped the fire (inset) claiming their rented house in Blackbutt Pl, Byron Bay.
LUCKY TO BE ALIVE: Ryan Walsh, Andrew Brooker and Naomi Tatum. In the early hours of Tuesday morning they escaped the fire (inset) claiming their rented house in Blackbutt Pl, Byron Bay. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

"In a matter of minutes it could have been a lot different scenario," Mr Brooker said.

"If we were asleep and there was no one at the front of the house to realise there was something going on, by the stage it got to the back it would have been a lot more serious I reckon."

Mr Brooker said the three motorbikes had batteries and were fully roadworthy, however no one he has spoken to had ever heard of a motorbike spontaneously combusting.

Despite the house having a working fire alarm, the residents say they didn't hear it sound before they were out, possibly because the fire started in the carport.

The house contains asbestos and has been cordoned off by police and HAZMAT tape.

To donate cash or send messages offering support visit their YouCaring fundraising page.



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