Manchester fire: Blaze breaks out at 12-storey apartment block in city's Northern Quarter

One person taken to hospital after flames spread across several floors 

Chris Baynes
Saturday 30 December 2017 17:51
Fire breaks out at 12-storey apartment block in Manchester

“Heroic” fire crews tackled a large blaze across several floors of a 12-storey apartment block in Manchester city centre.

One person, aged 23, was taken to hospital after the fire broke out on the ninth floor of the building in Joiner Street in the city’s Northern Quarter.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service sent 12 engines to the scene and warned people living nearby to close their doors and windows.

Images posted on social media showed smoke billowing out of the building while crowds of people watch on from below.

The fire service said flames “had spread to multiple floors” and one person had been taken to hospital with smoke inhalation.

“Please keep windows and door shut if you live locally and avoid the area if possible,” it added on Twitter.

A witness told the Manchester Evening News: “It looks like a very big fire. There are police and ambulances and fire engines everywhere. The fire is about half way up the building – it looks serious.”

Another witness, Les Gunn, told BBC Radio Manchester: “The fire appears to have spread up about three floors and is now making its way towards a roof.

“There are multiple fire appliances at the scene... numerous police and emergency vehicles as well. The fire service appear to be in the building.”

Crews brought the flames under control by about 6pm, two hours after the fire began.

Jeremy Corbyn praised emergency services for their swift response.

He tweeted: “Thank you to @manchesterfire for their heroic work bringing the blaze in Manchester’s Northern Quarter under control, and to the swift response of @gmpolice and paramedics.”

North West Ambulance Service said it had sent seven ambulances and a hazardous area response team to the scene. A spokeswoman did not yet know anyone had been treated by paramedics.

Greater Manchester Police cordoned off an area around the building between High Street and Tib Street.

The fire broke out on the ninth storey before spreading to other floors

Pat Karney, a Manchester councillor who went to the scene after the fire broke out, tweeted soon after 5pm that the blaze “seems to have been put out”.

Lucy Powell, Labour MP for Manchester Central, said: “He and the council will ensure that anyone evacuated will have somewhere to stay. All fire and response procedures have kicked in. Again, please stay away from area to allow services access.”

The fire service said the blaze was ”well under control” by 6pm.

Witness Andrew Hirst said crowds could be heard cheering as the blaze was being extinguished.

“You could hear the crowd’s cheers as it was going down and you could see the torches from the firemen searching the burned out apartments right next door to the other apartments that were still frighteningly ablaze,” said the 36-year-old.

The businessman, who lives in Manchester’s Northern Quarter, said the firefighters “controlled it well”, adding the incident was “pretty scary”.

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