Melton Council urges tenants to heed fire safety advice following flats blaze

Firefighters attend the flats on Rutland Street in Melton to deal with a blaze in a communal area.'PHOTO TAKEN BY NATALIE ALLEN EMN-180523-112326001
Firefighters attend the flats on Rutland Street in Melton to deal with a blaze in a communal area.'PHOTO TAKEN BY NATALIE ALLEN EMN-180523-112326001
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Melton Council has reiterated its advice to tenants to stop storing items in communal areas after fire broke out in one of them on Friday night.

Police evacuated homes in Rutland Street as firefighters from Melton and Oakham battled the blaze, which investigators said was caused by a discarded cigarette coming into contact with a sofa which had been left outside between two flats.

Melton Council says it carries out regular fire safety checks on its residential properties and gives clear advice to tenants on how to prevent blazes breaking out.

Reacting to news of Friday’s incident, a spokesperson for the authority told the Melton Times: “We are relieved that no one was injured in the recent incident at the Rutland Street flats.

“We are continuing to communicate with tenants about the dangers of storing items in communal areas and are working in partnership with Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service to ensure fire safety compliance at all Melton Borough Council properties.”

The spokesperson added: “Our officers have been working with the fire service to secure the area and we carry out regular fire safety audits on all our town centre flats.

“We ask tenants to adhere to the safety instructions that are given out regarding storing items in communal areas to prevent an incident like this from occurring again.”

Melton fire crew manager Scott Smith, who attended the incident, said: “The fire service will be working with Melton Borough Council over the next few weeks to tidy up all the flats in the area as these common drying areas should not be used for storing furniture and rubbish.

“Had either of the flat occupants been at home they would not have been able to easily evacuate without being at risk and this certainly needs to be addressed.”

Any tenants requiring advice or assistance relating to fire safety or safe storage procedures is advised to contact the borough council on 01664 502502 or Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service on 0116 2872241.