Revealed: Tower block blaze which saw construction worker dramatically rescued was the SECOND fire to hit £750m building site in just five months
- Station Hill previously suffered a fire on its 12th and 13th floors in July this year
A Reading tower which went up in flames this morning was hit by its second fire in just five months.
Station Hill previously suffered a blaze on July 7 this year, months before the £750million project was due to be completed.
On that occasion the fire started on the twelfth and thirteenth floors of the high-rise building. All construction workers were evacuated safely and firefighters arrived on the scene within 90 seconds to extinguish the inferno.
Less than half-a-year later, shocking footage showed the horrifying moment a worker was almost engulfed in flames today before being rescued by a crane operator from the roof of the development.
Glen Edwards managed to pull off the heroic rescue after the stranded builder used his coat to signal to his lifesaver as clouds of smoke belched from the top of the structure.
Station Hill in Reading suffered its second fire in the space of just five months today
Shocking footage showed a worker being rescued from the roof by a crane after the building was engulfed in flames
Crane operator len Edwards saved the unnamed builder after he spotted the stranded man using his coat to attract attention
The same building previously suffered a blaze on its twelfth and thirteenth floors in July
Just two people had to be taken to Royal Berkshire Hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation
The flames and smoke spread across the whole roof of the £750m One Station Hill office development close to Reading Station
People have been told to avoid the area, with nearby locals told to close their windows and doors, as smoke can now from villages several miles away
It is still unknown how the second fire broke out, with one builder suggesting tarmac on the roof as a potential cause.
Despite the severity of today’s fire, just two people were taken to Royal Berkshire Hospital with smoke inhalation, including the workman saved from the roof.
Royal Berkshire and Rescue Service said that the blaze required 50 firefighters to tackle it at its peak.
The Sir John McAlpine construction worker managed to winched the man to safety at top speed as the blaze continued to roar, passing his cargo through the thick black smoke that was spreading throughout the town in what he described as a ‘close call’.
A carpenter who witnessed the incident said that onlookers applauded after the man was carried away from the flames in a metal basket.
Nearby Station Road and Blagrave Street were both closed while a drone investigation was launched by police.
A carpenter, who was working nearby, said onlookers below applauded as the man clambered into a metal basket attached to the crane and was carried away from the flames
Developer MGT Lincoln reiterated that safety was their ‘first priority’, despite the two separate incidents on its construction site this year.
Following the first fire in July, it insisted that the fire was ‘quickly contained’ and that the project would not be delayed.
A spokesperson for Redwood Consulting on behalf of Station Hill said: ‘We activated our fire emergency plans immediately, the emergency services were notified and are currently on site.
‘The safety of those on site and the wider public is always our first priority, and the site has been evacuated as a result. As soon as we have more information we will provide an update.’
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