Emergency crews are battling a large fire in the Brisbane suburb of West End, with Vulture St closed. Picture: Peter Taggart/Twitter
Emergency crews are battling a large fire in the Brisbane suburb of West End, with Vulture St closed. Picture: Peter Taggart/Twitter

Firefighters battling big fire in inner-Brisbane

A FIREFIGHTER  has been taken to hospital as crews continue to battle a huge blaze in inner Brisbane this morning, with multiple buildings affected and streets closed in the area.

The fire engulfed an eight-room boarding house and a commercial building at South Brisbane.

QFES Acting Superintendent Richard Gordy says the fire is under control but is still not out.

The fire started in a boarding house on Vulture Street about 6am.

Everyone who was inside the building is believed to be safe.

Another neighbouring commercial property has reportedly not been affected.

Superintendent Gordy said there were 11 crews onsite, with about 31 firefighters working to contain the blaze.

One witness, who lives a block away from the fire, said she had "never been more scared".

"This terrified me, I've never been more scared," she wrote online.

"Hearing what I assumed were explosions/shots and screams may be the most horrifying thing I've heard in years."

Nearby resident Antal Kovacs recalled the moment he heard his neighbours shout for help.

"I just heard screams, 'fire, fire, help, help," he said.

"I looked out (the window) and could see the smoke and ran down, by the time I was down here it had already taken hold."

Residents of a nearby retirement village were moved to a safer wing of the building and prepped for evacuation.

Jeremy Lawrence from the QAS said residents of the nursing home was the service's greatest concern.

"The nursing home is our major concern, behind the fire," Mr Lawrence said.

Mr Kovacs, who lives a few hundred metres away from the fire scene, ran to the nursing home to help residents.

"I was helping people out of the retirement village, making sure they weren't in danger out the back," he said.

Vulture St is closed in both directions near Appel St as a thick column of smoke billows into the air, with multiple fire crews on the scene.

Queensland Police Inspector Steve Flori said the outcome could have been much worse.

"We're very lucky that no-one's been caught," he told media.

"I don't even know if there's been smoke detectors."

Police said they may have pinpointed where the fire started, but do not know the cause at this stage.

It's expected the boarding house will have to be demolished.

MORE TO COME