Firefighters tackle huge fire at building with flats as top floor partially collapse

The top of a three-storey building in Westcliff, Southend, were "completely alight" when Essex Fire crews arrived. Credit: Essex Police

Firefighters spent the night battling a huge fire at a building with flats that caused the roof to partially collapse.

The roof and top floor of the three-storey building in Westcliff, Southend, were "completely alight" when crews arrived on Sunday evening after 8.20pm, Essex County Fire and Rescue Service said.

There was "significant damage" to the first floor, which were unoccupied flats as the roof and top floor had partially collapsed.

Around 40 firefighters worked to tame the fire, with some working overnight.

Firefighters at the scene of a fire in Westcliff, Essex. Credit: Essex Police

Essex Fire group manager Ben Turner said: "As it was unsafe for firefighters to enter the building, we have used two of our aerial ladder platforms, from Chelmsford and Grays.

"Crews have worked really hard to get the fire under control and stop it from spreading."

He continued: "Although the ground floor did not suffer any fire damage, we are not sure of the extent of the smoke and water damage at this stage."

A man was treated for the effects of breathing in smoke and left in the care of the ambulance service.

Residents nearby were warned late that night that they could experience a break in their electricity supply overnight.

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