Arson attack at NI flats could have led ‘to loss of life’

An arson attack at a block of flats could have led to ‘loss of life’ says the PSNI.

Thursday, 25th March 2021, 3:16 pm

Firefighters used breathing apparatus to put out a blaze at Aldervale Flats in Craigavon after another arson attack.

The NI Fire and Rescue Service were called to a fire at the flats last night at around 10.26pm.

It is understood no one was injured in the blaze which is believed to have been arson.

A spokesperson for the NIFRS said two appliances from Lurgan Fire Station and one Appliance from Portadown Fire Station attended the incident.

“Firefighters were called to reports of a fire in a ground floor flat.

“Firefighters wore breathing apparatus and used two hose reel jets to extinguish the fire.

“The cause of the fire is believed to have been deliberate ignition and the incident was dealt with by 11.42pm.”

Detectives investigating the fire are appealing for witnesses.

A PSNI spokesperson said: “Police received a report of the blaze at a flat in Aldervale at 10:55pm. Officers attended the scene, along with the NIFRS who extinguished the blaze.

“No one was in the flat at the time, which has been extensively damaged as a result of the fire.”

Detective Inspector Celeste Simpson said: “Thankfully, there have been no reports of any injuries, however, the fire could easily have spread to other parts of the building and may have resulted in serious damage or loss of life.

“Enquiries are under way to establish the circumstances of this incident, which is being investigated as arson with intent to endanger life, and anyone with information is asked to call police on 101, and quote reference number 2009 of 24/03/21.”

Anyone with information is asked to call 101 and quote reference number 2009 of 21/03/21. A report can also be made via http://www.psni.police.uk/makeareport/ or anonymously via the Crimestoppers Charity on 0800 555 111, or online at http://crimestoppers-uk.org/

This is the latest in a long history of arson attacks at these flats.

Last month a number of residents had to be temporarily rehoused after an extensive fire at the flats - also deemed to be arson.

In October last years there were a number of incidents of fireworks being thrown into communal hallways at Aldervale Flats.

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