Bristol

Bristol flat fire victim 'lit balcony fires'

Askew Architects Image copyright @askewarchitects
Image caption Residents were evacuated from the flats because of Saturday's fire

The victim of a fire at flats in Bristol had been seen lighting fires on his balcony, residents have said.

A 61-year-old man died in the blaze on Saturday in Carolina House, a 13-storey block in Kingsdown.

Residents were evacuated after residents from a nearby bail hostel alerted them to the fire.

People living nearby said the man had started fires. Bristol City Council said it had gained an injunction following fire-related complaints.

A council statement said: "We can confirm the council had been in contact with the tenant but there had been no fire-related complaints since May this year when an injunction was served.

"It would be inappropriate for the council to comment further on the circumstances and the individual until the full investigation is complete."

'No heating'

Dozens of people were taken to a nearby church. Several roads in the area were also closed.

Neighbour Malcolm Chappell said the fire brigade had been to the victim's flat "numerous" times after his electricity was cut off 18 months ago.

"He's had no heating, no hot water, no lighting... It was an accident waiting to happen," he said.

Harry Awramenko, from Avon Fire and Rescue, said: "Saturday's incident was tragic and our thoughts are with all those who knew the gentleman who lost his life.

"Our focus is now is on conducting a thorough investigation which will look at many factors in order to understand how the fire started and to provide assistance to the other residents of Carolina House.

"Saturday's fire would have been a particularly frightening experience for anyone who was in the flats at the time."

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