A pair of quick-thinking security guards at a Solihull shopping centre helped to evacuate terrified residents after a fire tore through the roof of a nearby tower block . The fearless guards at Chelmsley Wood1 Shopping Centre were on patrol when they spotted the flames and smoke coming from the top of the building in nearby Moorend Avenue. As shoppers watched the drama in horror, the brave duo sprinted across to the block, which is managed by Solihull 2Community Housing (SCH) and alerted the concierge to the danger.
Smoke from the fire in Chelmsley Wood
The plucky twosome, who would not be named, swiftly took to the stairs and banged on the doors of the flats in the 10 storey building. Residents told the Birmingham Mail they had been unaware of the blaze which could be seen for miles away after the fire took hold at around 1.45pm. Twenty-five firefighters3 tackled the incident and gave oxygen therapy to one man who was injured.
Residents from the top two floors were evacuated.
The fire at the block of flats in Moorend Avenue Chelmsley Wood (Photo: Handout)
One of the security guards said: There didn t seem to be a fire alarm in the block.
We tried to find one so that we could actually hit a panic button.
My colleague went to the top floor and I started on the fifth so we worked it between us.
We were there for about five to 10 minutes but it seemed longer.
We didn t think about it, we just went in to help . Then the fire brigade took over. Liberty Chester, who has a four year old daughter Lacie, said she didn t feel safe.
I m just glad Lacie wasn t there, she said.
If she had been she would not have gone back into the flat. The 24-year-old added: It was the security guards from the shopping centre who saw the smoke and ran over to tell us.
They tried to find the fire alarm but couldn t.
Then they began banging on all the doors to tell us.
We were waiting outside for maybe half an hour to 45 minutes.
We weren t told anything . Nobody knew what was going on.
One man was treated for minor burns and smoke inhalation.
Residents were allowed to return to their homes after the blaze was extinguished at about 3pm.
Chloe Moore, 18 and her mum Michelle Thomas at the scene of the fire in Chelmsley Wood
Michelle Thomas lives on the third floor and her daughter Chloe Moore lives on the top floor of the building. Michelle said: When I got there I saw a roofer who was working there . He tried to put it out himself and his arm was covered in bandages.
Chelsea Lee has lived in the block for 3 years . The 23-year-old said: Everyone looks out for each other here. Peter Stoate, a spokesman for SCH, said: We are pleased to report that the fire on the roof of Cheshunt House was quickly extinguished by the fire services .
One contractor working on the roof was treated at the scene but no tenants were injured.
Some tenants had to leave their homes for a couple of hours while safety procedures were followed but all were able to return soon afterwards.
A HOMELESS shoplifter who died outside Trowbridge’s Asda after the concealed alcohol bottles he had cut open his abdomen as he was tackled by a security guard, an inquest heard.
Kieran Church, 30, died after he was tackled to the ground by 20-year-old security guard outside Asda in Trowbridge on February 9.
He died at 5.01pm after he suffered three wounds to his abdomen from the shattered alcohol bottles.
Senior Coroner at Salisbury Coroner’s Court, David Ridley, said on Tuesday how Mr Church, who had self harmed before and had drug and alcohol issues, often stole bottles of alcohol to sell for money.
He was initially stopped by Mr Rose after leaving a Sainsbury’s store with bottles of brandy, and handed the drink back.
Mr Rose said he spotted a syringe sticking out of Mr Church’s pocket, and let him go to avoid a confrontation.
Later that afternoon, security staff in Asda saw Mr Church take two bottles alcohol from a shelf, hide them inside his jacket and leave the store.
Mr Rose, a Security Industry Authority-licensed guard, was walking to a local police station to hand in CCTV of the earlier incident when he saw Mr Church leave the supermarket.
Asda security guard Denise Thomas said in a written statement to the inquest: “This male was walking in the direction of the car park and cash machines and as he was walking away I politely and calmly said, ‘excuse me’, and he ignored me.
“A Sainsbury’s security guard I didn’t know ran at the male suspect from behind and he pounced on him.”
Coroner David Ridley said: “Her view is that it was a clear act to take the male to the ground as opposed to detaining him standing up.
“It caused the male shoplifter to fall face down with the Sainsbury’s security guard on top of him.”
CCTV of the incident was played to the court.
Mr Rose described to the inquest how he planned to use a recognised detention technique to raise Mr Church’s arms so he could not use anything in his pockets, such as a syringe.
“I wouldn’t say I lost balance,” he said.
The coroner asked: “Once contact is made, both of you lost balance and you fell on to Kieran?”
Mr Rose replied: “Yes . The first thing I did was take hold on his right wrist . Then it became apparent that it was really serious.
“The ambulance was called .
It felt like a lifetime but it was probably only five or six minutes.”
Mr Rose added: “After the earlier incident I didn’t hear of Kieran being involved in anything else, so I assumed he had left the area.
“I knew he had failed to get what he wanted from our store, so it was only a matter of time before he tried elsewhere.
“Due to the needle he posed a risk . By chance of going into The Shires I spotted him again . You can follow and detain once you have got the crime reference number from the police.”
- The town has spent 4.6 million on retractable bollards on entry points
- The 70th Cannes Film Festival is set to open on May 17
- It is the first to be held since the terror attacks in nearby Nice last July
- 580 volunteers will also be on the streets looking for suspicious activity
Cannes Film Festival is set to spend millions on security in the wake of the French terror attacks. The city, famous for its glamorous annual festival is reportedly spending $6 million ( 4.6 million) on retractable bollards at every entry point to the town. The film festival is set to open on May 17. French police officers gather at the Cannes International Film Festival in 2016 (File photo)
Nicole Kidman attends the opening of the Cannes Film Festival in 2014 (File photo)
Since the Nice terror attack in July, security in the town has been beefed up (File photo)
The festival is the first to be held since the horrifying terror attacks in Nice last July.
86 people were killed during the attack in which a lorry rammed revelers at a Bastille Day fireworks display on the promenade. According to Variety3, Yves Darros, head of Cannes police said the town has spent $6 million ( 4.6 million) on retractable bollards at every entry point. The city is beefing up its security on every level with volunteers recruited to look for suspicious items or people behaving suspiciously. While concrete sleepers have been fitted on the walkway to the Palais, where the major events are held. Yves Darros told local newspaper Nice-Matin4: ‘We were already thinking of securing this place before that attacks . Chicanes will also be created on the pavements.
The returns are pretty positive . It’s reassuring for the public.’
French police officers take security measures during the festival in 2016 (File photo) Kristen Stewart and Marion Cotillard will make appearances at this year’s film festival
This year marks the 70th Cannes International Film Festival (File photo)
Surveillance of the town’s bay and harbour has also been increased. Last year Cannes recruited 400 security team members to assist police . While this year 500 volunteers plus 80 ‘vigilant neighbours’ have been recruited to help patrol Cannes and look out for suspicious activities. Stars such as Nicole Kidman, Marion Cotillard, Kristen Stewart and Jake Gyllenhaal are set to make an appearance at the 70th Cannes International Film Festival. Those bringing their own bodyguards will have to go through Cannes clearance and if they carry guns then they will have to have approval from France’s interior ministry. France is still in a state of emergency following a spate of terrorism attacks in the country including the Nice and Paris attacks. Last month twenty members of a suspected jihadist network named the ‘Cannes-Torcy cell’ went on trial on terror charges. Their plan was considered the most dangerous to threaten the country when it was discovered in 2012, reports France 245. Also last month a policeman was shot dead by an attacker who was described by Francois Hollande as ‘terrorist in nature.’
Two other officers were wounded.
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