A teenage boy jumped from a burning block of flats yesterday after fire broke out in his home.

Another man was rescued by firefighters from the top floor of the three-storey building in St James's Road, West Croydon.

More than eight fire engines and 40 firefighters were called to the blaze at about 5pm, with the fire starting on the first floor of the building.

It was put out by 7pm in the evening, with crews from Tooting, Purley, Croydon, Addington, Woodside and Wallington at the scene.

The 13-year-old boy leapt from the first floor of the building before firefighters arrived and was given first aid by ambulance staff at the scene.

Firecrews swept in and rescued a man on the top floor using a ladder, who did not require hospital treatment.

A rest centre was set up by Croydon Council for people living in the flats shortly afterwards.
Station manager, Peter Rickard, said at the time: "When I was on my way to the incident I could see the smoke from about a mile away so I knew it was likely to be a large fire.

"At the moment, parts of the second and third floors of the building are alight and firefighters are working extremely hard to bring the flames under control.

"Crews wearing breathing apparatus are also carrying out a search of the building.

"It’s too early to say how the fire started at this stage, but as soon as it’s safe to do so, our fire investigators will be working to establish what caused it."

Since the fire broke out the brigade's 999 officers were inundated with about 20 calls reporting the incident.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

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