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Ipswich MP calls for sprinkler installation as quickly as possible at Cumberland Towers

PUBLISHED: 06:25 27 November 2017 | UPDATED: 06:25 27 November 2017

Sandy Martin, Labour MP for Ipswich. Picture: SEANA HUGHES

Sandy Martin, Labour MP for Ipswich. Picture: SEANA HUGHES

Sandy Martin says people need to know they will be safe

Westgate councillors Carole Jones, Julian Gibbs and Colin Kreidewolf at Cumberland Towers. Picture: KATY SANDALLSWestgate councillors Carole Jones, Julian Gibbs and Colin Kreidewolf at Cumberland Towers. Picture: KATY SANDALLS

Ten fire crews attended Cumberland Towers early on Friday evening after a fire broke out in a sixth floor flat.

The crews were able to contain the fire to the flat. Two people were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

Mr Martin said; “I understand that work on that is due to start as soon as possible but I would like to make sure that we get sprinklers in all multi storey buildings.

“If people are living in them they need to know that they will be safe.”

Damage to a sixth floor window is all that is visible at Cumberland Tower from Friday's fire. Picture: KATY SANDALLSDamage to a sixth floor window is all that is visible at Cumberland Tower from Friday's fire. Picture: KATY SANDALLS

Members of Ipswich Borough Council have confirmed that despite council funding issues sprinklers were being installed at the property.

An executive decision was made by the council in August to have the system installed as quickly as possible at the sheltered housing scheme following the Grenfell fire tragedy in June.

The cost of the installation was expected to be around £180,000.

Westgate councillors Carole Jones, Julian Gibbs and Colin Kreidewolf all visited Cumberland Towers on Saturday morning to examine the damage to the flat for themselves and to see how residents were coping.

They said that there had been extensive smoke damage to the flat in question but that safety precautions in the building’s design meant that more serious damage had been avoided.

They were pleased that safety procedures had been followed at the building, adding that the “building had stood up well”.

Cumberland Towers has often been used as a training venue for Suffolk Fire and Rescue to practise on.

The three councillors said that residents in the building had been pleased with the emergency services’ response and that many were “getting on with their lives” after Friday night’s events.

Cllr Jones said; “We are very grateful to the emergency services. The officers have done a great job.”

The councillors were also able to confirm that the resident of the damaged flat will be going into emergency council accomodation following the fire.

Police Forensic services were also at the property on Saturday morning to corrobate details about the fire.

Further details about the fire’s cause have not yet been released.

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