Police rescue 2 people from a building after a fire started by a cigarette in Aston

Police are appealing for witnesses as we investigate an arson in Birmingham, which saw officers help two people to safety last night.

Dog unit officers who were in the area were the first on the scene after spotting the fire in Villa Road, Lozells at just before midnight.

They called for backup and firearms officers who had specialist equipment forced their way in to the adjacent building and led the occupants to safety.

They also checked another property which was above the fire and thankfully found there was no one inside.

Our officers were checked by paramedics at the scene, with one going to hospital for further checks for smoke inhalation.

27 February update | Following further enquiries, police now believe the fire may have been started by a cigarette discarded next to the flats.

The blaze was dealt with by West Midlands Fire Service colleagues and our investigators are treating it as arson.


Police are carrying out door-to-door enquiries and trawling local CCTV as we work to establish who is responsible, with neighbourhood teams aware for reassurance purposes.

They’d ask anyone who has any information or dashcam footage from around midnight last night to get in touch.

DS David Newson, from Birmingham CID, said: “This fire had the potential to have really serious consequences. Thankfully, the quick-thinking response of officers in the face of danger to themselves got the two residents to safety.

“We are working with our colleagues at WMFS Fire Investigation Team and would like to hear from local people as we try to build a picture of what has happened.

“Villa Road is a main route and we’d ask anyone who was driving along it between 11pm and midnight time, to take a look at any dashcam they may have, as it could hold vital evidence for our investigation.”

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