Howling wind threatened to spread fire with embers
UPDATE, 12.30: Northern Rivers Fire and Rescue duty officer Inspector Phil Sheedy said the strong winds made conditions very difficult for fire fighters tackling this morning's blaze on Childe St at Belongil.
"The guys have done a fantastic job," he said.
"On the other side of the building is right on the shoreline and it's howling wind at the moment, about a 70 knot wind, so those conditions made for some very very tough fire fighting and the fire fighters on scene have done a fantastic job."
Inspector Sheedy said when crews first arrived, flames had completely engulfed the deck.
"They had to try and get past the fire to get round the other side to be able to put water on it and they've done a fantastic job trying to save the house," he said.
"It was a good hour and a half before the guys were actually on top of it and then a further hour, hour and a half, before they finally extinguished it.
"With the howling wind we're very very conscious of the fact that any embers that are left may cause us a problem further down."
UPDATE, 11.15am: It took 24 firefighters to fight the blaze that destroyed half a Belongil beachside house early this morning.
Northern Rivers Fire and Rescue duty officer Inspector Phil Sheedy said given the strong winds, the crews did a good job keeping the fire retained to the deck and preventing spread to the rest of the house and neighbouring properties.
He said the first call to emergency services was made at 5.03am.
"This morning crews from Byron Bay and Brunswick Head and Bangalow stations responded to numerous triple 0 phone calls to a yard fire," he said.
"They arrived on scene to find the whole decking of this particular house here at Belongil completely involved in fire.
"It ended up being around 24 firefighters who did a marvellous job in actually keeping the fire confined to the decking as opposed to the house."
Inspector Sheedy said the cause of the fire was unknown, however an investigation was underway.
"The house is actually undergoing renovations at the present moment so it was fortunate that no one was actually on scene, in the house," he said.
"The actual owner lives in Sydney and the caretaker was actually called by security to come on scene."
UPDATE, 11am: Video
ORIGINAL: A BEACHFRONT property at Byron Bay has been destroyed by a fire this morning.
Emergency services received multiple Triple-0 calls to the house in Childe St at Belongil just after 5am.
It took several hours for fire fighters to get the blaze under control as they battled gale force winds.
No one was in the house at the time, and no one was injured.