An Australian man was reveling in the New Year’s Eve festivities when he got a shocking call from his neighbor a minute before the ball dropped.
“Do you realize your house is on fire Rob?” said the neighbor.
The blaze ripped through Rob Faulkner’s Hampstead Road house in Adelaide's inner north-east leaving only a few upright brick walls and $300,000 worth of damage.
Faulkner told ABC News that the home had been in his family for a “long period of time.”
“I was looking forward to just a little bit of time off and one of my friends invited me around to his house for New Year's Eve celebrations with his kids and I got a phone call from one of the neighbors,” he said.
“You don't know what to say ... I guess it takes a while for something to hit home.”
Adding, “It had a lot of character to it, that house."
Faulkner said he had put a lot of work into refurbishing the house back in the 1980s.
Faulkner offered to repair old bikes for a civic organization who donate the bikes to those in need. He said the group has fixed over 900 bikes.
“I'm heavily involved in volunteer work so that had just drawn to a close (because of illness) and I was looking forward to just a little bit of time off,” he told the Adelaide Advertiser.
“We were all going to have a few weeks off ... and this was going to be my year to get stuck into it -renovating the bikes and sending them away.”
A neighbor at the posterior of the house said he heard a large explosion ensued by a haze of smoke before the flames engulfed the whole property.
“I had just gone to bed when I heard a bang and saw all this smoke coming out the back,” the neighbor told the Adelaide Advertiser.
Fire crews were at the blaze for just over an hour when the fire was securely smothered, according to a South Australian Fire Service spokesman.
Detectives have yet to verify what triggered the fire.