The identities of the four people missing after an explosion at a wood treatment work near Macclesfield have been released by Cheshire police.
In a statement, the missing four workers were named as William Barks, 51, Dorothy Bailey, 62, Jason Shingler, 38, and Derek Moore, 62, as the search for those caught up in the tragic incident continues.
Cheshire Police have confirmed that three explosions caused the fire at Wood Flour Mills in Bosley, near Macclesfield, where the incident has been unfolding for over 48 hours.
Guy Hindle, assistant chief constable of Cheshire Police, confirmed the names, saying that the search for the missing people continues.
"We are still in search phase, we are still looking for signs of life down at the scene,” said Hindle, “and at some point in the next days we will hand over the scene from fire to police for a joint investigation with the Health and Safety Executive to establish the cause of what happened down there, together with fire investigators."
Paul Hancock, chief fire officer for Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service (CFRS), said rescuers are searching two specific areas of the collapsed building in Bosley, Cheshire.
"We are slowly and methodically accessing those two areas. We firmly believe we are searching the right areas."
Details have been emerging that council enforcement officers were at the mill just two weeks ago after complaints of saw dust that needed clearing. Reports also show that there has been a history of fires at the site, with one in 2010 and another in 2012.
But Michael Jones, leader of Cheshire East council, is asking people to refrain from jumping to conclusions. "We were on site two weeks ago clearing it up and they did well to clear it up. We will produce that evidence as and when necessary.”
"We shouldn't assume anything,” continued Jones, “we mustn't go down the trail of assuming anything.
“We will make all facts available of what we know. There are on-going complaints, but when you have this nature of business, close to a community, there will be complaints about dust and noise and pollution which we as a council have been dealing with."
Jones said the council was now working to re-house the six families whose homes have been damaged by the explosions.
Police say they will be working in the next few days with WTL International, the company who own the premises, who are yet to make any statement about the incident.
David Rutley, the MP for Macclesfield, said: "I think it’s important to say the business does need to get involved with the investigation, because there are questions in the community that need to be answered, and today is not that day, today is about the families and in due course those questions, those important questions, will need to be answered."Reuse content