Northern Ireland

Dunmurry: Teen girls 'trapped' in barn with burning polystyrene blocks

A Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue tender Image copyright NIFRS

Four teenage girls were trapped in a disused barn on Monday evening after a group of male youths set blocks of polystyrene on fire and threw them in, police said.

The 13-year-old girls went into the barn on Mount Eagles Avenue in Dunmurry, shortly after 20:15 BST.

While they were inside, the youths threw in the polystyrene blocks, as well as wood and stones, trapping them.

Police said one of the girls called Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service.

Detectives have appealed for information following the reported arson attack.

One of the males involved is described as having blonde hair which was shaved at the sides and was wearing a black top and navy bottoms.

Another was described as wearing a green and white top, with a third described as wearing a grey tracksuit with the hood covering his face.

PSNI Det Sgt Hollie McCartan said it was "extremely fortunate" they were not dealing with more tragic circumstances.

"Thankfully there were no reports of any serious injuries and only minor damage was caused to the barn," she said.

"If they had not managed to contact the authorities, the consequences could have been devastating. The persons responsible showed a complete disregard for the safety and wellbeing of those inside."