Sixteen people were rescued by fire fighters last night when a blaze broke out at a block of flats in Portsmouth. Residents spent much of the day at a Salvation Army centre whilst the cause of the fire at Windsor House is investigated. Martin Dowse reports.
Sixteen people had to be rescued by firefighters when a blaze broke out at a block of flats in Portsmouth.
The fire started in the stairwell of the first floor of Windsor House, in Canal Walk, off Arundel Street in Landport.
An emergency call was put in at about 8.30pm on Saturday evening.
The fire blocked several exits so terrified residents raced to the roof and leaned out of windows, as the smoke started to fill the stairwell of the six-storey building.
Crews from Cosham, Southsea and Havant used breathing apparatus to enter the building and lead residents to safety.
The aerial ladder was used to rescue two people from the roof and one person was treated for smoke inhalation and taken to hospital.
Firefighters were at the scene for several hours.
The fire service and police are investigating the cause of the blaze.
Officer in Charge Station Manager Ash stated "Fortunately only one person needed hospital treatment, but without the swift action of the responding crews this number could have been a lot higher".
Sixteen residents have been taken to a Red Cross rest centre in Portsmouth.