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Smethwick flat fire 'caused' by cannabis factory

  • 12-3-2015

A cannabis factory was uncovered by firefighters who believe electrics used in the plants' cultivation sparked a blaze in the West Midlands.

Crews found about 200 plants as they tackled the flat fire in Smethwick.

A nearby resident alerted the fire service after seeing smoke billowing out of a fourth floor window of the five storey block.

The flat, in Beakes Road, was empty at the time and police say they are working to trace its owner.

West Midlands Fire Service watch commander Andrew Shakespeare said: "We had to make a forced entry. There was no occupier present and we found a fire in the back bedroom.

"Some of the electrical equipment they use to set up the grow overloads the electrics and we believe it to be a fire started by an electrical fault."

Gina Lycett, of West Midlands Police, said: "We were called at around 9.10am this morning by the fire service following a report of a small electrical fire at a flat on Beakes Road, Smethwick.

"When officers gained entry a cannabis factory containing approx 200 plants were found. Enquiries are still ongoing to locate the owner of the property."

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Reproduced under licence from BBC News © 2015 BBC

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