Blaze warehouse fireworks warning

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Published: Tuesday 4th November 2014 by The News Editor

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Fireworks sold at a warehouse which was engulfed by a fatal blaze are to be inspected by safety experts, police have said.

In a joint “precautionary” warning, Staffordshire Police and the county’s Trading Standards department advised people not to use fireworks sold by SP Plastics before the blaze.

Two men are believed to have died in the fire, which broke out at the firm’s site on Stafford’s Baswich Industrial Estate last Thursday.

Confirming that the cause of the fire has not yet been identified, Supt Ian Coxhead said it was likely to be some weeks before fireworks from the site could be tested and confirmed as safe.

The senior officer said in a statement: “Our ongoing investigation includes tracing any fireworks that have been purchased from SP Plastics so they can be thoroughly inspected.

“This is just one line of inquiry we are exploring with our colleagues from Trading Standards.”

Anyone who purchased fireworks from SP Plastics is asked to make contact with Staffordshire Police on 01785 232656.

Mr Coxhead added: “We ask that people do not take fireworks to a police station or council offices.

“As with any fireworks they should be stored in a cool dry, safe and secure place away from anything that could ignite them.

“Specially-trained officers continue to support the families of those involved and they will be kept updated on the progress of our investigation directly.”

Emergency services have now left the warehouse, which remains dangerous and has been fenced off to prevent public access.

The families of the men who are believed to have died paid tribute to them in statements issued on Saturday.

Simon Hillier, 41, was described as a “fantastic son and brother” and a “terrific dad” while relatives of Stewart Staples, 57, said he was a “devoted family man”. Investigators believe Mr Hillier was working at the site, while it is thought Mr Staples was a customer.

Published: Tuesday 4th November 2014 by The News Editor

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