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Fire investigators at scene of fatal bungalow blaze in Strood

By Ed McConnell

Fire investigators are this evening combing the scene of a fatal blaze after a pensioner was found dead.

Witnesses reported emergency crews have taped off a bungalow in Orchid Close, Strood, and that the inside of the property appears to have been badly burnt.

Police cars and ambulances were also seen in the area near Bligh Way shops.

Orchid Close, Strood
Orchid Close, Strood

Kent Police spokesman Natalie Hardy said: "We were called at 4.20pmto a fire at a residential property in Orchid Close, Rochester.

"Officers attended and provided assistance to crews from Kent Fire and Rescue Service and South East Coast Ambulance Service.

"A man in his 70s was pronounced dead at the scene. His next of kin have been informed and a report is being prepared for the coroner.

"Inquiries into the cause of the fire are ongoing. It is currently being treated as unexplained."

Police said they attended Sovereign Court, however witnesses said the bungalow was actually opposite the block.

Kent Fire and Rescue Service said it was called just after 4pm by a home monitoring system to reports of a fire in sheltered accommodation.

A spokesman added: "Upon arrival, the property was found to be full of smoke. Fire crews quickly deployed a search team wearing breathing apparatus as further information suggested that the occupant was still inside the property.

"Firefighters worked swiftly to clear smoke and fumes from the property using a positive pressure ventilation fan.

"One male casualty was discovered by the rescue team, but sadly was found to be deceased by paramedics.

"Inquiries into the circumstances of the incident are in progress with KFRS fire investigators and Kent Police. There are no reports of any other injuries."

Witnesses said the victim was disabled and had carers visit him on a daily basis.

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