One missing, two in hospital, after fireworks plant blaze

One person is unaccounted for after a large blaze at a fireworks factory which saw two others taken to hospital.

Dramatic video of firework factory blaze:

One person is still unaccounted for after a blaze broke out at a fireworks factory in Stafford yesterday evening.

Firefighters have been searching the SP Fireworks premises in Tilcon Avenue overnight and police are due to begin an investigation into the cause of the fire later today.

Two men were taken to the University Hospital of North Staffordshire, one aged in his 60s suffering from a back injury and another, aged in his 40s, with serious burns.

Two women, one aged in her 40s and the other in her 50s, were assessed for smoke inhalation but discharged at the scene, police said.

The blaze at a Stafford fireworks factory Credit: Rich Harper

Thick plumes of smoke and dramatic bursts of fireworks exploded in all directions from the factory shortly after 5pm yesterday.

There were 50 firefighters, eight engines and four specialists appliances at the scene, Staffordshire Fire Service said.

West Midlands Ambulance Service sent four ambulances, the Hazardous Area Response Team, four emergency doctors, five paramedic officers and two rapid response vehicles to the scene.

Eyewitness Tom Roeton describes the moment he saw the warehouse burst into a "fireball":

Group manager Tim Hyde of Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service told ITV News that if the missing person was inside the main part of the building, things would not look positive for them.

Due to the size and severity of the blaze, no firefighters would have been able to carry out a successful rescue, he said last night.

He said: "There is a small area where if somebody is there and they have just fallen over and been knocked out, they would be able to survive. We are making access into that right now and we are going to search the area to confirm they are not in there.

"If they are there, we will rescue them and our ambulance colleagues will treat them immediately."

Asked if things would look good for the missing person if they were trapped in that location, he said: "At this stage, no I'm afraid it doesn't."

Superintendent Jane Hewett, of Staffordshire Police, said in a video statement made at the scene: "What I can say at this time is that we do have one person unaccounted for.

"We are working with their family. We will continue to make enquiries to try and establish their whereabouts."

During the blaze onlooker Mike Hillman said he was watching from Tixall Road, adding "massive fire, loads of smoke this way, hope everyone is OK".

He tweeted: "Hoping everyone is OK over there, looks like it has spread down the whole row of units on that side of the estate."