Crews tackle fire in asbestos-riddled building

Crews feared the asbestos filled roof would collapse

A BLAZE at a workshop last night (thur) escalated into a ‘chemical incident,’ after a collapsing roof was in danger of showering firefighters with abestos.

The 29 firefighters had to don special protective gear to tackle the fire, which raged for several hours.

They had to pull back from the burning building amid fears the toxic substance would be spread by the flames.

The blaze at Newbattle Abbey Business Park in Dalkeith started at 9.15pm.

The 50m by 30m workshop was ‘well alight’ when fire crews arrived, a fire service spokeswoman said.

Specialist fire engines and an extra pump were called in after it was discovered the single storey building had asbestos in its roof.

The firefighters had to withdraw for their own safety, as the asbestos-laden roof was in danger of falling in and releasing the chemical.

Six senior officers were also present at the scene.

The firefighters tackling the blaze asked for more turntable ladders and cherry pickers as they fought to keep the dangerous flames under control.

The flames were doused by fire crews throughout the night.

They brought the blaze under control by 6.40am today (Friday), and it is understood the building was completely destroyed.

A fire service spokeswoman said: “Fire crews had to withdraw after it became a chemical incident.

“Four breathing apparatus, a hose reel and two main jets were used.

“No one was injured in the incident.”