Cornwall

Mobility scooter 'may have caused St Austell flats fire'

St Austell fire Image copyright @wazza25
Image caption An investigation has started into the cause of the fire at the block of flats

Investigators looking into the cause of a fire in a block of flats in Cornwall say a mobility scooter charging in a hallway may have been to blame.

Fire crews were called to the ninth floor of the Park House building at Bridge Street just before 19:30 BST.

More than 20 people who live on the upper floors were forced to spend the night elsewhere and do not know when they will be allowed to return home.

Seven people were treated for minor injuries.

Steph Dymond, who lives on the 11th floor, said: "The alarm started going off. I looked out of the window and saw people rushing out.

"I opened the door and saw black smoke. I grabbed the kids and we ran down the stairs as quickly as we could."

Occupants of the lower seven floors were allowed back into the building once the fire was extinguished.

Some of the residents spent the night in a local church hall.

Others stayed with friends and one resident said he slept in his car.

Ocean Housing Association, which runs the flats, said residents would be put up in a hotel if they were forced to spend another night away from home.

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