Firefighters extinguish building blaze in Needham Market
23:57 11 February 2016
The blaze is believed to have been in a storage unit
Firefighters were called to a blaze at a building in Needham market on Thursday night.
Four crews were sent to the scene, in Station Yard, after the alarm was raised at about 9.35pm.
It was reported that the blaze came from a storage unit in the area.
Cihat Duman, who manages nearby restaurant The Olive Tree, said: “Smoke was coming in from the back, I didn’t know what was going on.
“I couldn’t breathe so I opened the door.
“The guys (firefighters) were here quickly.”
John Illingworth, station commander for Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service, said the blaze was a first floor fire.
“It appeared to be an involved roof fire on a commercial building,” he added.
Crews had to cut through steel to get into the property while the fire was dealt with from above by the aerial appliance.
Mr Ellingworth said there was concrete asbestos creating banging and popping noises, but there was no explosion as such.
But there were a few precautionary evacuations by the fire service, in case the blaze got any worse.
“There was not any major explosion,” he said.
“Now we are looking at how we move forward and try to identify what caused the fire.”
It took crews around 10 minutes to get through the steel in order to get into the building and fight the fire from inside.
About 40 firefighters tackled the fire, while UK Power networks isolated electricity to and from the building.
Mr Ellingworth said: “The crews have worked really well and stopped it from going anywhere else. It was confined to the first floor area.
“We’ll stay with it for a while longer until it’s safe to leave and then come back and reinspect after a period of time.
“We’ll try and find what was the cause tomorrow.”
Crews from Princes Street in Ipswich and Stowmarket were initially sent to the scene, but they then requested further assistance from colleagues in Elmswell and a further appliance from the Princes Street station.
Station Yard is adjacent to Needham Market Railway Station, but Greater Anglia confirmed last night that no services were affected.