Families trapped by toxic fumes in night-time East End blaze

A NIGHT-time fire trapped several families in a block of flats in London’s East End. Rubbish bins caught light at the entrance to Bethnal Green’s Rogers Estate in Roman Road at 5am yesterday

By Mike Brooke

A NIGHT-time fire trapped several families in a block of flats in London's East End at the weekend.

Rubbish bins caught light at the entrance to Bethnal Green's Rogers Estate in Roman Road, on the corner of Globe Road, at 5am yesterday.

The flames spread to plastic wall panels which caused toxic smoke rising up the stairwell.

"The cause have been started by a careless cigarette or match," said fire brigade watch manager Martin Warrilow. "There was more rubbish than usual left in the bins and we've advised families to be careful about how they dispose it in future because of the fire risk."

Families woken by the smoke had to stay in their homes with the doors shut while emergency crews from Bethnal Green fire station brought the flames under control and ventilated the building. It took an hour to clear the smoke, but no-one was hurt.