Northern Ireland news

Man whose car was set alight outside north Belfast home describes 'terrifying' ordeal

The car was destroyed in the arson attack. Picture by Declan Roughan

A man whose car was set alight outside his north Belfast home has described the "terrifying" ordeal.

Police are investigating the arson attack in the Newington Street area during the early hours of Saturday.

Accelerant was poured on the vehicle before being set alight at around 2.25am.

CCTV footage shows two males approaching the vehicle and setting it ablaze, with one also appearing to catch fire during the attack.

The car's owner, who did not want to be named, said it had been "burnt out completely".

"I had fallen asleep on the sofa, my wife and kids were all in bed and I woke as I heard my neighbours squealing and shouting," he said.

"I looked out and the whole car was blazing.

"I knew I had a full tank of petrol and two tyres blew so I ran to get the kids to the back of the house. My daughter rang the fire brigade and so did the neighbours.

"It has been burnt out completely, which is devastating as we need it.

"I phoned the mobility to tell them it's a write-off, but I'm not sure what's going to happen now.

"To set it on fire in the dead of the night, it was terrifying. I never slept the following night either."

A police spokeswoman said "it is believed two males, with their hoods up, approached the Vauxhall Grandland X at around 2.25am and poured accelerant on the vehicle before setting it alight".

"The pair then made off from the area on foot.

"Police and the fire service attended and the blaze was extinguished.

"Anyone with information or who was in the area at the time is asked to contact police on 101."

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