Firefighters rescue people from flats in Dundee

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Three children and an adult received check-ups after the second of two deliberately-started fires at the building in Court Street.

Nighttime

Two deliberate fires at a block of flats in Dundee could easily have resulted in tragedy and officers from the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) have appealed for people to help protect their communities from the reckless, criminal behaviour.

Three children and an adult were checked for smoke inhalation after the second of the emergencies in Court Street early this morning (Tuesday 12 April).

Firefighters used a ladder to rescue three people from first floor flats during the incident, with four others led to safety once the fire had been extinguished and toxic smoke cleared from the close.

Group Manager Martin Tait, the lead officer in Dundee, said: “We are extremely lucky that no-one was seriously injured.

“Deliberate fires are incredibly dangerous and everyone needs to understand that these incidents could have resulted in absolutely devastating consequences, including the tragic loss of life.”

He continued: “Those responsible for starting fires have no idea how they will develop or who will be affected – they are endangering lives and need to ask if they could live with themselves if someone was killed because of their actions.

“Even a small fire involving rubbish can rapidly spread and the smoke produced will very quickly travel throughout a building.

“It blocks the escape route, leaves people trapped in their homes, causes significant damage to property and can be an absolutely terrifying experience even if serious injury is avoided.”

Firefighters were first sent to Court Street around 1:45am and they arrived to find two wheelie-bins and a roll of carpet on fire at the front entrance to the close.

Crews were again sent to the building when a fire within the bin recess saw an emergency call made shortly before 4:30am.

Specialist officers from the SFRS Fire Investigation Unit are liaising with police counterparts to establish the circumstances surrounding the fires and help identify those responsible for setting them.

Anyone with information regarding deliberate fires is urged to contact Police Scotland by calling 101 or share it anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 55 111.

Firefighters will visit homes in the vicinity today to provide advice to residents on how to reduce the risk of deliberately-started fires endangering their homes and those inside.

Household items and rubbish should never be left on the stairs or landings as these could attract people who set fires, produce large amounts of smoke and heat and also obstruct people as they try to exit the building.

Where fire does strike early warning is crucial if people are to get to safety and call 999. Working smoke alarms save lives and no-home can ever afford to go without the essential devices.

Free home safety visits are available by calling 0800 073 1999, texting ‘FIRE’ to 80800 or filling in a form at www.firescotland.gov.uk.

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