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Hampshire Co-op store destroyed in blaze
12:29pm Sunday 6th January 2013 in News
A blaze has destroyed a store in Hampshire despite the best efforts of 30 fire fighters to contain it.
The fire ripped through the Co-op shop, eventually leading to the collapse of the roof.
Fire crews were called to the scene at 2.50pm yesterday afternoon after a shop employee reported seeing smoke billowing from the back of a freezer inside the store.
Within five minutes firefighters had arrived at the single-storey building in Milton Road, Cowplain, Waterlooville, and all staff were outside the building.
Three people were treated at the scene for smoke inhalation by South Central Ambulance Service, one of whom was taken to hospital as a precaution. There were no further injuries.
The single-storey building was completely taken over by the blaze and crews from Waterlooville, Horndean, Cosham and Southsea used four sets of breathing apparatus, four jets and an aerial ladder platform to put it out.
Group Manager Tony Deacon said: “We have seen from fires in similar shops in this area how quickly the roof can be compromised. “Our initial crews on the scene reported all members of the public had been evacuated from the building and we then quickly withdrew our initial BA crew due to the concern over the roof.
“The roof then collapsed once the flames got into the roof space and we were left to tackle the fire from outside the building."
The cause of the blaze is believed to have been an electrical fault.