Police and fire crews investigating a blaze where people had to be rescued from Kettering flats believe the fire may have been started deliberately.
Seven fire appliances were at the scene of the blaze off Dryland Street at around 9.20pm last night (Monday).
It is believed the fire started in a car in the car park underneath the flats, before spreading across the block.
Nobody was injured in the fire, although two residents were taken to hospital as a precautionary check-up.
The fire was eventually brought under control at about 10.30pm.
Group Manager Terry Smith said: “On arrival, the crews were met with a substantial fire, where smoke and flame was spreading to opposite sides of the building.
“The crews worked hard to bring the fire under control in the basement car park under challenging conditions.
“Further crews used ladders to get onto the roof, where a number of residents had gathered.
“Other fire crews entered the building wearing breathing apparatus to ensure residents safety and lead them down the protected stairwell, which was cleared from smoke using positive pressure fans.
“No-one was injured in the fire; however, two residents were taken to hospital for a precautionary check-up.
“The incident remained live during the night, with one crew attending during timed intervals to check on the building for fire hot spots and flame flare up.”
Amar Mahal, who runs the Frydays of Kettering cafe opposite the flats, says he was told nobody was injured.
He said: “We got here this morning just after 7am to open and everything was shut off.
“We were told the fire might have started from a car underneath the flats but I don’t think anybody was seriously injured.
“The road where I’d normally park has been shut since we got here but we’ve been allowed to trade as normal.”
Witnesses, or anyone with information or who saw anything suspicious in the area around the time of the fire, are asked to call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.