A petrol explosion at a house where an 11-year-old boy was seriously burned this afternoon was heard in neighbouring streets.
A "huge whoosh" came from the house in the suburb of Ascot Park, Porirua, around 1.30pm and brought neighbours out of their houses.
"It made a huge noise I wondered what had happened," said Yvonne Clinch, who lives in a nearby street.
"All of the birds flew off in a mass exodus because of the noise and then a short time later there were fire engines and two ambulances."
Mike Wanoa from the Fire Service confirmed a petrol can had exploded at the house.
"When we arrived the fire was out but unfortunately the person had suffered burns.
"We stayed and assisted ambulance with the patient."
Wanoa said it was not yet clear what had caused the explosion.
The boy was taken to Hutt Hospital by Wellington Free Ambulance.