Around 125 firefighters are continuing to tackle a tower block blaze in a cluttered top-floor flat in east London.
Some flats underneath the 17th floor apartment in Dunedin House, Manwood Street, north Woolwich were evacuated, while people nearby were ordered to keep away as huge plumes of thick black smoke billowed from the windows.
Fire crews are also tackling a one-hectare grassland blaze opposite the block, close to London City Airport.
Firefighters are tackling a fire on the 17th floor of a building in #Woolwich. Crews are also dealing with a fire involving around one hectare of grass opposite the block https://t.co/JgvxRTlFxe © @Mr_Stevo87 pic.twitter.com/ZGGQpfkiKJ
— London Fire Brigade (@LondonFire) July 20, 2022
There are no reported injuries and the cause of the original fire is unknown.
Station Commander Keith Sanders said: “There were a lot of possessions and clutter inside the flat which made it challenging for firefighters.
“It can make fires spread much faster, especially when there are lots of flammable items such as newspapers or cardboard.
“Crews are working to bring the fire under control and smoke is now subsiding.”
The top corner of the 17-storey block of flats was left blackened with several apartment windows missing, but smoke is no longer emerging.
It came a day after the UK recorded its hottest ever temperatures, with firefighters facing their busiest day since the Second World War, with tinder-dry conditions causing devastating fires in grassland.
Resident Mohammad Rajib Hossain, 29, said he was forced to alert neighbours because the fire that started on the 17th floor did not trigger an alarm.
He said he only heard about the blaze because one of his friends in a different building rang him to say she could see flames.
He continued: “I had to knock on the door, you know, they’re my neighbours, I had to knock the door and say there’s a fire.
“They didn’t know, some of them were sleeping. No one knows, there’s no fire alarm or nothing.
“There is no fire alarm in the whole building, it is inside the flat but not outside.”
Rolly Apao, 45, who lives near Dunedin House, described the scene as “a real inferno”.
Mr Apao, a healthcare assistant, told the PA news agency: “I noticed the fire because of the thick smoke.
“When the fire started, our neighbours were also curious and we saw people outside the burning building, the smoke was on the top floor.
“It looked like a real inferno… but I am glad as well because firefighters were able to tackle the fire quickly.
“(I was) scared, but I have to pay attention to my surroundings for my safety.
“We just had the heatwave yesterday which we (have had) to deal with mentally and physically… the heat is too much to bear.”