"Severe" Fire Near Hospital In Staffordshire
12 February 2019, 05:52 | Updated: 12 February 2019, 06:08
A man has been detained on suspicion of arson after a fire ripped through a mental health facility.
The 43-year-old was held as firefighters tackled the "severe" fire which broke out at the George Bryan Medical Centre, near the Sir Robert Peel Community Hospital in Tamworth, on Monday night (11th).
Images showed flames and smoke billowing from the building's roof, part of which appeared to have fallen in.
Attended large fire #Tamworth but thankfully no casualties. Excellent work by @StaffsFire @WestMidsFire @WarksFireRescue supported by @OFFICIALWMAS @WMASHART @wmasjwilliams @wmaskeithnevitt @StaffsPolice #JESIP one team working together to save lives & reduce harm. pic.twitter.com/XziYURo8nZ— Mark Hayes (@999flymo) February 12, 2019
Staffordshire Police said a suspect, from Tamworth, had been detained and appealed for information from witnesses.
A spokesman from Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) earlier said there had been reports of one of the patients absconding during the commotion caused by the blaze.
Christopher Pincher, the Conservative MP for Tamworth, said he was "very concerned" by the fire.
Very concerned to hear about this developing news. I very much hope that there are no injuries and wish all the best to our local fire crews, Police and emergency services. https://t.co/LJ3VlpY8Vb— Christopher Pincher (@ChrisPincher) February 11, 2019
Around 10 crews from Staffordshire, West Midlands and Warwickshire fire services were deployed as fire took hold at the facility, prompting the evacuation of nearly a dozen occupants and staff.
A spokesman from SFRS said that there was "quite a lot of the building involved" in the blaze.
"We're trying to sacrifice part of the building and let that burn to prevent it from spreading to the rest of the hospital," he added.
Staffordshire Police said they were called to the incident at 9.15pm. There are no reported casualties.
The force said 11 occupants and staff were evacuated from the centre and were being transferred to other local medical centres.