22/02/2007

Suspicious fire in south Belfast

Police in south Belfast are investigating the circumstances surrounding a suspicious fire earlier this morning.

The blaze is understood to have started at around 5.30am at a printworks in the University Avenue area of the city.

Six fire appliances were tasked to the scene, however it has since been reported that the fire has been contained.

Three businesses were damaged during the incident.

A full investigation into the cause of the fire is expected to be carried out later today.

Commenting on the fire, Ulster Unionist South Belfast assembly candidate Esmond Birnie has said: “The fire service deserves praise for containing the blaze which started at a prints works on University Road/Ormeau Avenue in the heart of a densely populated residential area.

“The damage which has been done will represent a tragic loss from the point of view of at least one small business in this inner city area.

“Since there are early indications this fire was started deliberately I would ask everyone to help the police in their inquiries.

“This part of Belfast has suffered from far too much anti-social behaviour but this is a very extreme example of such.”

(EF)


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