Express & Star

One man taken to hospital after four people escaped to safety from 'severe' blaze in Smethwick

One person has been taken to hospital following a 'severe' fire in Smethwick last night.

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West Midlands Fire Service

A man, a woman and two boys received treatment at the scene from fire crews and the ambulance service after they managed to escape to safety from the fire.

The man was taken to hospital, suffering from the effects of breathing in smoke.

Crews from six fire stations arrived at the property on Bearwood Road within five minutes and quickly brought the blaze under control.

People were initially told to "avoid the area where possible" but the road soon re-opened.

Firefighters remained at the scene to investigate the cause of the blaze, which they have now confirmed was started accidentally.

West Midlands Fire Service said: "We were alerted at 9.10pm on Wednesday 13 July. Our first crew arrived five minutes after being mobilised.

"Staffordshire and West Midlands Fire Control received several 999 calls about the incident, and imagery from members of the public via our 999eye system.

"As a result, five fire engines, a 4x4 Brigade Response Vehicle, an aerial platform and one of our drone teams responded. They were crewed by 30 firefighters from Smethwick, Ladywood, Handsworth, Woodgate Valley, Oldbury and West Bromwich fire stations.

"A man, a woman and two boys received initial treatment from our crews and then the ambulance service. The man was taken to hospital, suffering from the effects of breathing in smoke.

"The upper floor of the flat was completely destroyed by fire and collapsed into the first floor.

"Several firefighters wore breathing apparatus to tackle the fire, which was under control by 10.20pm. It had been extinguished by 11.45pm, when we started to scale down our resources at the scene.

"Our investigators have confirmed that the fire started accidentally."