Five flats left with smoke damage following fire outside

Five flats have been left with smoke damage following a fire outside. 

Crews were called to Witchards, Basildon, after reports that a fire was rapidly spreading and smoke was entering a building.

On arrival firefighters reported that three people, including a young child, had been rescued by ladder by a member of the public and four still needed assistance with exiting their homes. 

Firefighters quickly worked to lead the other trapped residents to safety while other firefighters began to tackle the fire outside. 

Crews quickly surrounded the fire, which was in a covered walkway at the side of the flats, extinguished it and then cleared the building of smoke. 

Station Manager Russ Freeman said: 

"We believe the fire started from a pile of rubbish set alight by discarded smoking materials. It spread incredibly quickly, producing a large amount of smoke and heat as it did so.

"There were about ten people in the building at the time. Before we arrived a member of the public used a ladder to rescue three people from two flats. We rescued an additional four when we arrived, leading them out via their front doors. The rest made their own way out.

"Because of the amount of smoke created, five out of the six flats have suffered smoke damage."

Fire officers have worked with partners to make the scene safe and give additional support to the residents. 


Incident number
Attending station
Witchards, Basildon
9.51am - 30 June 2024