Tumble dryer fire evacuates school

19 Sep 2011

A fire in a school classroom caused the entire building to be evacuated, leaving around 1,000 pupils outside as the blaze spread to the roof.

Firefighters managed to put out the flames, believed to have been sparked by a tumble dryer, at Dowdales Secondary School, Dalton-in-Furness, Cumbria.

The fire broke out at around 2pm on Friday and needed at least five fire engines, brought in from nearby Barrow, Broughton, Dalton, Ulverston and Walney.

A spokesman for Cumbria County Council said: "The fire was reported in the food technology unit of the school shortly after 2pm and early indications are that it is thought to have been caused by a tumble dryer. Two members of staff at the school were taken to hospital after the fire. They have now been released from hospital and given the all-clear."

Dowdales headteacher Julie O'Connor said: "While this has been a difficult afternoon, the evacuation went very smoothly, with students and staff working together to ensure everyone's safety. Further details on the extent of the damage and how it will affect the running of the school from Monday will be issued on the school website over the weekend."

Copyright Press Association 2011

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