Flats evacuated in fire drama

FAMILIES living in a tower block in Essex had to be led to safety after fire broke last night.

FAMILIES living in a tower block in Essex had to be led to safety after fire broke last night.

Around 30 people, including families with young children, were evacuated from the top five floors of a 10-storey block of flats in Cluny Square, Southend.

A couple in the flat where the fire broke out suffered from the affects of smoke inhalation and were taken to hospital by ambulance.

Crews from five Essex fire stations arrived at the scene at 6.34pm and were confronted by a number of frightened people at the windows of the flats.


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Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus were able to establish where the blaze had started and put it out quickly using one hose-reel but smoke had spread to neighbouring properties and floors below.

A dry riser, which enables firefighters to tap into water and deliver it at high pressure to the floor where it is needed, had been vandalised on the third floor and crews had to use force to release the valve, resulting in flooding of the floor below and the lift shaft.

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The cause of the fire, which was under control by 7.21pm, is currently unknown.

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