Two firefighters injured as crews battle blaze for more than seven hours

Around 70 firefighters are at the scene in Edinburgh after the blaze broke out in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Latest updates
  • Two firefighters have suffered minor injuries as crews continue to tackle a major blaze in Edinburgh
  • 70 Scottish Fire and Rescue Service personnel and nine engines are at the scene in Bonnington
  • More than 100 residents have been forced out of the high-rise flats
  • Members of the public have been urged to avoid the area

Two firefighters have been injured as crews continue to battle a blaze which broke out at a block of high-rise flats in Edinburgh.

More than 70 firefighters remain at the scene on Breadalbane Street, Bonnington seven hours on after the alarm was raised shortly after 4am on Thursday morning.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service sent nine pumps and a height appliance to the scene as more than 100 residents were evacuated from the flat block.


Two firefighters have been injured tackling a major blaze which ripped through a block of flats in Edinburgh. Around 70 firefighters were called to a fire at high-rise flats in Bennington, with around 100 residents evacuated from the buildings. #fire #emergency #scotland #report #reporter #news #update #edinburgh #social #ptc #socialnews #social

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SFRS confirmed two firefighters have been injured while tackling the blaze, but did not require hospital treatment.

Members of the public have been “strongly” urged to avoid the area as a police cordon has been put in place.

Central Scotland MSP Graham Simpson was among those staying in the building at the time.

“The fire alarm went off and people started evacuating and everybody got out,” he said.

“There is a fire in the fifth floor flat and flames were belching out of that flat, and it has then spread upwards to the sixth floor and the fire is still going on and smoke is belching out. I can still see flames, it appears to have spread to the stairwell.

“Everybody has been evacuated, nobody has been hurt, that’s the main thing, but some people will have lost their homes.

“People got out but it was very dramatic and still is.”

Simpson, a Scottish Conservative MSP, said the fire crews were doing a “fantastic” job but access issues were making it more difficult for them as they could not drive up to the front of the building.

He said: “I think there is a safety issue in that the fire brigade cannot get a fire engine up to the front of these flats because of the way they are designed, so what they’re having to do to get access from the front is actually carry ladders up to the front and put ladders up against balconies, it’s pretty shocking.

“They have managed to drive up round the back, I’ve seen a turntable ladder spraying water into the flats from there, but they cannot get proper access to the front.

“They’ve got into some flats and they’re spraying water from balconies but right now the fire is still raging.

“The fire brigade should be able to drive up to the front of the building and get a turntable ladder.

“It’s quite ludicrous they are having to carry ladders up and physically put ladders up to balconies. They are doing a fantastic job but the fire is still going.”

Simpson posted pictures and video of the blaze on social media, showing flames coming from one of the flats high up on the building.

A Scottish Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson said: “Around 70 firefighters, 12 fire appliances and additional specialist resources are currently in attendance at a well-developed fire involving a high rise building in the Breadalbane area of Bonnington, City of Edinburgh.

“We received the call at 4.10am following reports of a fire within a flat.

“The building is being evacuated and firefighting operations remain ongoing.

“There are no reported casualties at this time involving members of the public.

“Two firefighters have sustained minor superficial injuries and have been assessed at the scene by the Scottish Ambulance Service. They do not require hospital treatment.”

Deputy assistant chief officer Andy Girrity, the officer in charge of the scene, said: “The fire is contained and firefighting operations remain ongoing to bring this incident to a safe conclusion.

“This has been a complex incident which involved the evacuation of a large number of people.

“Our crews have worked tirelessly to contain this fire and prevent further spread within the building.

“There is a large-scale emergency service presence and we will remain on the scene for a considerable time.

“I would strongly advise members of the public to avoid the area.”

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