Arson sparks rush to toilet

Loo blaze drama tackled by firefighters

ARSONISTS caused a public inconvenience when they sparked a blaze in ladies’ loos at Sidmouth’s Three Cornered Plot – leaving them out of use for three hours.

Culprits packed paper towels into basins and a bin before setting them alight last Friday evening.

Town firefighters raced to the toilets at around 6.40pm after onlookers saw smoke.

Crew members donned special breathing apparatus before tackling flames with a hose reel jet.

Watch Commander Rob Crisp told the Herald: “Somebody had set fire to a load of paper in the sinks and bin - it was arson.

“When we got there the toilets were quite badly smoke logged.

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“There was smoke damage to the premises.

“What was slightly unusual was that it was a ladies’ toilet. It’s not the first time we’ve been in one, but you normally get the men’s going up.”

A spokesperson for East Devon District Council (EDDC), which manages the toilets, said: “It is believed that someone deliberately set fire to a litter bin inside the ladies’ toilets. The fire and rescue service quickly put out the flames and damage was very limited, with only the plastic sack and its contents destroyed.

“After smoke and water damage had been cleaned up, the toilets were back in use the following morning. They were out of commission for around three hours.”