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Tower block fire treated as suspected arson

The fire was contained to the lobby area of the 22nd floor Photo: West Midlands Fire and Rescue Service

A fire at a high-rise residential building is being treated as suspected arson.

The incident happened in the communal lobby area of the 22nd floor of the 32-storey Cleveland Tower in Holloway Head, Birmingham.

West Midlands police are investigating the incident, along with West Midlands Fire and Rescue Service .

Four fire engines and around 20 firefighters were sent to the scene. It is thought that around 750 people live in the tower block, but that no-one was injured.

Area Commander Ben Brook, of West Midlands Fire Service, said:

Following the Grenfell Tower fire in London last month, today’s incident was understandably shocking for everyone concerned. I can confirm that there was no cladding on the structure.

Some 30 to 40 people decided to leave the building, although this was from areas not affected by fire or smoke.

The building’s design, which includes compartmentalisation of individual flats, performed as expected.

Damage caused by the fire was confined to the lobby area, although smoke affected the building from the 15th floor to the top of the building.

We are working closely with West Midlands Police and liaising with Birmingham City Council which owns the building.

Our firefighters will be carrying our Safe and Well checks for residents of Cleveland Tower and providing reassurance.

– West Midlands Fire Service, Ben Brook

The first fire crew arrived within 4 minutes and 30 seconds.

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