Leeds & West Yorkshire

Bradford flats evacuated over fire safety concerns

Appleton Point, Bradford Image copyright Google
Image caption Residents of Appleton Point say they were given just 24 hours to leave their homes after fire safety concerns were identified

A 160-bed tower block in Bradford has been evacuated over "serious fire safety deficiencies".

Dozens of residents at Appleton Point were told to leave their homes on Wednesday after West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service (WYFRS) identified a number of issues.

It said the property did not have an appropriate fire warning system and also raised concerns over the cladding.

Bradford Council said it was working to find accommodation for those affected.

The fire service said it had been "made aware of serious fire safety deficiencies, including "breaches in compartmentation".

This is the process of dividing a building into different areas to stop fire spreading.

'Another Grenfell'

Deputy chief fire officer Dave Walton said: "A prohibition notice, which means the building can no longer be occupied, is a last resort and is not a measure taken lightly by the fire service.

"However, where the fire safety measures within the building are insufficient to such a degree, we have no other option.

Resident San Nagre said people were feeling "confused and scared" and occupants were given just 24 hours to leave.

He said fire officers had previously visited the property and at the end of 2018 had shut the underground car park amid safety concerns.

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"The fire service came last night and did some tests on the building and then told us that we all have to leave," he said.

"We've been told there is a problem with the cladding on the building, and the fire service don't want another Grenfell.

"I'm angry because the fire service have been looking at this building for months but have given us less than 24 hours notice to get out."

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