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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Derelict Burslem factory fire started deliberately

13/06/2017

ALP in use at Burslem derelict factory fire
ALP in use at Burslem derelict factory fire

A joint investigation by Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) and Staffordshire Police has found a derelict factory fire in Stoke-on-Trent was started deliberately.

“To tackle the fire effectively crews needed to work in teams to target different areas of the building, the unsound structure of the building meant that the safest way to tackle the fire was from outside the building and using the APL was essential for this."

Mark Walchester, Station Manager

SFRS were called to a report of a fire in the old Wade Factory in Westport Road, Burslem, just after 5pm on Monday June 12.

Five fire appliances attended from Sandyford, Hanley, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Kidsgrove and Burslem. The Aerial Platform Ladder (APL) attended from Longton.
Crews used the APL, two breathing apparatus, a hose reel jet and a main jet to tackle the fire, which was causing a large smoke plume.

Colleagues from Staffordshire Police helped to ensure local residents kept doors and windows closed to avoid smoke inhalation.

By around 6.15pm the smoke plume had reduced and the fire was extinguished by around 7pm, with crews continuing to damp down until after 11pm. Regular inspections took place throughout the night to make sure there were no hotspots.

Mark Walchester, Station Manager, said: “This incident was in a large derelict factory building and on arrival the fire was burning through the roof, causing a large plume of smoke.

“To tackle the fire effectively crews needed to work in teams to target different areas of the building, the unsound structure of the building meant that the safest way to tackle the fire was from outside the building and using the APL was essential for this.

“We revisited the factory throughout the night to monitor for any hotspots and make sure the fire didn’t reignite.

“A joint fire and police investigation has taken place this morning (Tues) and has found that the fire was started deliberately.”