Hornchurch fire Two men arrested on suspicion of arson after explosion at

first_imgExplosion at residential block of flats on A127, Hornchurch, East LondonCredit:John McLellan Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Police, ambulances and fire engines at the sceneCredit:Grant @ SnowAndBeach/Twitter Police, ambulance and fire crews were called to an explosion at a block of flats in east London on Monday evening. The explosion occurred shortly after 5pm in Ardleigh Green Road in Hornchurch and it was thought that there were a number of casualties.As many as 60 firefighters were said to be on the scene, but the cause of the explosion was not immediately known.  Police, ambulances and fire engines at the scene We have treated three patients at the scene of a fire in #Hornchurch and so far have taken one man to hospital.— London Ambulance (@Ldn_Ambulance) January 23, 2017center_img Police said two people were taken to an east London hospital, two were being treated at the scene, and one went to hospital themselves.Firefighters were dealing with a blaze in a ground floor flat in a three-storey building.The Metropolitan Police later arrested two men on suspicion of arson. Both were taken to hospital for treatment. Jason Smedley, 46, managing director of Nail Harmony UK, close to the Bridge Point building, said he was in his office at the time.”We felt the whole building shake,” he said, adding that he could soon see “flames billowing”. Mr Smedley said the front of the flats had been “blown out” across the road.”We pulled people back and told them to get out of the way,” he said, adding that he and his staff brought people back to their office to give them shelter.”Unfortunately there was a woman and her daughter, that were in the flat above, that heard the explosion, ran out, and we brought them back … had just their dressing gowns on, so we just gave them tea and blankets. They’ve got nowhere to live tonight,” he said. A Havering Council spokesman said most residents went to a local McDonald’s restaurant, adding that measures will be put in place to ensure they had somewhere to stay.The council spokesman said the explosion came from a ground floor corner flat, adding that 41 flats had been evacuated, with many residents staying with family and friends.Police said road closures were in place and people were advised to avoid the area.A spokesman for Scotland Yard said: “Police were called at 17:14hrs on Monday, 23 January to reports of an explosion at a block of flats in Ardleigh Green Road, Hornchurch.”Officers, the London Fire Brigade and the London Ambulance Service are currently at the scene. We await an update as to the number of people injured.”At this early stage officers are unable to confirm the cause of the explosion but enquires are underway. Residents are in the process of being evacuated from the building. The Local Authority has been informed. Local road closures are in place. Motorists and pedestrians are advised to avoid the area.” Explosion at residential block of flats on A127, Hornchurch, East Londonlast_img read more