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[02 MAR 01] CRIMES, FIRES & ACCIDENTS
Vandals Torch Coventry Sports Centre

Vandals nearly sent Coventry Sports Centre up in smoke last night when a fire in a toilet was deliberately started.

The blaze broke out shortly before 9pm. Fire crews were called to the building and discovered a blaze in a toilet in the fourth floor.

It was contained quickly, but could have caused extensive damage to the centre had it not been spotted earlier.

The toilets themselves had been recently refurbished as part of decoration work in the centre.

Thick smoke and fumes prevented staff from putting the blaze out themselves as plastic fittings in the toilet melted in the heat.

An investigation revealed that a plastic toilet roll holder had been deliberately set alight.

Centre manager Ian Lole said the building was open as usual today.

He said:

"It was a gents toilet on the fourth floor, about as far as away from reception as you can be.

"There is a lot of smoke damage in the toilet, and a little bit of damage outside the toilet on the landing, but the rest of the building was fine.

"We didn't let people back in after the fire had been put out because there was an acrid smell and it was close to closing time, but the sports cente is open as usual."
 

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CWN / Crimes, Fires & Accidents / 2 Mar 01
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