London

Woolwich house fire: Woman dies in 'suspicious' blaze

Fire engine outside the house in Woolwich Image copyright PA
Image caption Eight fire engines were called to the scene in Centurion Square

A woman has died in a "suspicious" fire which ripped through a south London townhouse.

Residents in Centurion Square, Woolwich, were woken by a loud bang at about 01:00 BST before flames took hold.

The victim, in her late 40s, was found dead inside the three-storey property.

A man in his 60s was seen jumping to safety from a second-floor window. He and a woman in her 50s both sustained non-life threatening injuries.

Up to 60 firefighters tackled the blaze, which prompted more than 20 emergency calls.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said the fire was "being treated as suspicious".

'Heard a boom'

A neighbour, who did not want to be named, said she heard a loud bang which she thought might have been some sort of gas explosion.

"I heard the boom so when I came out I just saw the flame and people were screaming.

"When I came there the old man was jumping from the top. He was just on the floor, it was horrible, I didn't want to watch."

Image copyright PA
Image caption The woman was found dead inside the house after the fire was brought under control

It is the third fatal fire in London in a week.

One woman died at the scene of a flat fire in Chalfont Road, Edmonton, on Sunday while another woman died in hospital following a flat fire in Chalk Farm, Camden, on Monday.

An investigation has begun into the cause of the Woolwich blaze, which was brought under control by 03:15, LFB said.

"Sadly one woman was found dead at the scene by crews wearing breathing apparatus," the brigade added.

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