Man, 61, dies after fire breaks out in Gorbals flats
December 16, 2009 by localnews
A man has died and two other adults were treated for the effects of smoke inhalation after a fire broke out in a fifth-floor maisonette flat in the Gorbals.
More than 40 people were rescued or escorted from their homes at 83 Waddell Court after fire crews were called to the block at around 3am on Wednesday morning.
Firefighters had to force their way into the property where the 61-year-old was found.
At the height of the blaze, 20 fire appliances were at the scene and 20 firefighters wearing breathing apparatus were in action inside the building.
The fire was brought under control at around 7am and the eastbound lane of nearby Ballater Street was closed until mid-morning.
Tenants who were moved from their homes were fed and accommodated at Gorbals Leisure Centre.
Area Commander Garry Milne, one of the officers in charge during the incident, said: ‘In my 20-plus years in the fire service I have never seen such a fierce fire in a property such as this.’
On Wednesday afternoon, Strathclyde Police, Fire & Rescue and council officials were planning contingency measures for the tenants at Waddell Court.
Glasgow Housing Association said the entire building, 77 flats, had been evacuated. The landlord hopes to have returned as many tenants to their homes as possible by Wednesday evening. Others will be moved to hotels, bed and breakfast accommodation or housed temporarily in furnished flats.
GHA’s Acting Director of Housing and Customer Services, Alex McGuire, said: ‘We are doing everything possible to help the families who are affected by the fire.
‘Investigations by Strathclyde Fire & Rescue and Strathclyde Police are continuing. Some of the homes have suffered fire and smoke damage and others have been affected by water damage.
‘Until inquiries are complete and properties are habitable a number of tenants will be unable to return to their homes.
‘We will put these families up in alternative accommodation and do everything we can to ensure their comfort and well-being.
‘GHA and other agencies are co-operating fully with the investigation.’