Teenagers arrested over firefighter death
Two fifteen-year-old girls have been arrested on suspicion of manslaughter after firefighter Stephen Hunt was killed in a blaze in Manchester city centre yesterday.
The fire, which started at 14.50 BST in Paul’s Hair – a hair product supplier on Oldham Street – was said to be particularly difficult to manage. Stephen Hunt, 38, was one of the firefighters tackling the blaze from inside the building.
County Fire Officer for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service, Steve McGuirk stated that the firefighters were starting to get the blaze under control around 20.30 BST when suddenly a “BA – Emergency” warning was issued signalling for everyone to immediately evacuate the building.
Both Hunt and another firefighter had to be pulled out by colleagues. It is believed that they were both taken to hospital at 20.35 BST where Hunt later died. The other firefighter is recovering in hospital.
Mr Hunt, a father of two, was based at Manchester’s Philips Park Fire Station and was praised as “a dedicated firefighter since 2008” by Mr. McGuirk.
A joint investigation between the police and fire service into the cause of the fire is currently underway.
Detective Superintendent Phil Owen released the following statement: “We have already arrested two juveniles in connection with the fire and our enquiries are continuing. If anyone has any information about how the fire started please get in touch.”
It is rumoured that arson has not been ruled out.
Due to the hot weather, the fire has not yet been extinguished and is still being dealt with.