Whitechapel Fire: Woman Rescued After Blaze At 22-Storey Building In East London

·3-min read
Fire which has broken out in a block of flats in east London. (Photo: Victoria Jones via PA Wire/PA Images)
Fire which has broken out in a block of flats in east London. (Photo: Victoria Jones via PA Wire/PA Images)

A fire broke out at 22-storey building in east London – with footage from the scene showing bright orange flames burning through a floor of the building as debris falls off the side.

London Fire Brigade said they were called to the Relay Building in Whitechapel High Street shortly before 4pm on Monday after a fire started in a 17th-floor flat.

At least 20 fire engines and 125 firefighters tackled the blaze, which could be seen for miles as social media captured glass panels falling to the ground.

The brigade said a woman was trapped by the blaze and firefighters rescued her by using a fire escape hood.

It also took one patient to hospital and crews checked a small number of people at the scene.

Screengrab taken from footage posted on Twitter by Alexander Best of a fire which has broken out in a block of flats in east London. (Photo: Alexander Best via PA Media)
Screengrab taken from footage posted on Twitter by Alexander Best of a fire which has broken out in a block of flats in east London. (Photo: Alexander Best via PA Media)

Speaking to residents who had gathered at The Corner cafe on Whitechapel Road following the fire, Richard Tapp, borough commander at Tower Hamlets said the building was “structurally sound”.

He told the residents that the fire was “all but extinguished” but debris like glass was still unstable.

London Ambulance Service spokesperson said: “We were called at 4:07pm today to reports of a fire at a high-rise building on Whitechapel High Street.

“We sent an ambulance crew, an incident response officer, a team leader in a fast response car and members of our hazardous area response team.”

London mayor Sadiq Khan said he was in “close contact” with London Fire Brigade’s Commissioner Andy Roe.

(Photo: David Zambrana via PA Media)
(Photo: David Zambrana via PA Media)

Lynn Ling, a London School of Economics student from China – who lives on the 20th floor with her husband Yuri, said the whole incident has been “very scary”.

Ling, who was wearing a silver security blanket because she forgot her coat in the scramble to evacuate, told the PA news agency that she was alerted to the fire by a friend who FaceTimed her from the street at about 4:30pm.

She said: “I did not hear an alarm.

“I think there was a fire alarm on the ground floor but I could not hear it clearly on the 20th.

“I went out of my door but I found there was smoke in the corridor so I went downstairs.

“I forgot to take my coat.

“It was very scary.”

She added that a fireman in the 19th floor was knocking on people’s doors to tell them to leave.

“He said: ‘Don’t be scared’.

“They were trying to protect us.” she added.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.

Related...

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting