Dramatic search as Shropshire firefighters feared person trapped in burning building

Brave firefighters searched a burning agricultural building near Market Drayton as roof timbers and tiles threatened to collapse - amid fears that someone may have been inside.

The scene of the blaze near Adderley. Photo: Market Drayton Fire Station.
The scene of the blaze near Adderley. Photo: Market Drayton Fire Station.

Reports that someone may have been missing and in the building near Adderley on Sunday morning meant a search had to be carried out.

A spokesman for Market Drayton Fire Station said: "The incident commander tasked the breathing apparatus crews to search the building as quickly and as best they could, bearing in mind the danger of collapsing roof timbers and tiles coming in on the breathing apparatus crews.

"Thankfully after a search of the building, and after having made contact with a responsible person, it was established that all persons were accounted for."

The rescue pump from Market Drayton and a Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service pump from Audlem, along with an operations officer, were all mobilised by fire control to the blaze.

The scene of the blaze near Adderley. Photo: Market Drayton Fire Station.

As it became clear that it was an agricultural building, the attendance was increased to include a light pumping unit from Shrewsbury, with a support pump from Baschurch and a water carrier from Oswestry.

The fire service spokesman said: "On arrival at the scene, the Market Drayton and Audlem crews were confronted with a fully developed and rapidly spreading fire, which involved a brick and concrete block built outbuilding measuring approximately 20m by 10 metres and was attached to a domestic property.

Smoke and flames were issuing and the fire was through the roof, it was evident that rapid and assertive fire fighting was required, and the incident commander instructed firefighters wearing breathing apparatus to immediately attempt to prevent the spread of fire using two high pressure hose reel jets.

The scene of the blaze near Adderley. Photo: Market Drayton Fire Station.

A priority assistance message of “Make Pumps 3, persons reported” was transmitted to fire control. A pump from Whitchurch was also then scrambled to the incident.

An ambulance and paramedic officer from West Midlands Ambulance Service and officers from West Mercia Police attended the scene.

Due to the location of the incident and the number of emergency service vehicles at the scene, the A529 Adderley to Audlem Road was closed for a number of hours to allow the emergency services to work safely.

The scene of the blaze near Adderley. Photo: Market Drayton Fire Station.

The incident consumed so much water that more supplies were ferried by fire appliances from two nearby fire hydrants.

"The fire was prevented from spreading further and brought under control through the hard work of crews," said the spokesman.

About half of the building, roof and contents, together with a large quantity of timber, was destroyed by fire.

After about three hours of the initial crews being on scene, there was still a large amount of damping down, cutting away and turning over required, so relief crews from Wem and Wellington were mobilised to the scene to take over firefighting activities.

The spokesman said that there were no casualties and that the fire is being treated as of accidental ignition.

He said: "We would like to thank our colleagues from West Midlands Ambulance Service and West Mercia Police for their support at this incident, the owners of the property for their support in providing mechanical machinery to assist crews in removing burning timber, and for the much appreciated cups of tea and coffee, and any members of the public who had to take a diversion due to the road closure for their understanding and patience."

Fire crews left the scene of the incident at around 4.30pm.

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