Arson attack sparks major fire at Gloucester Quays
A major fire at Gloucester Quays this morning was caused by an arson attack.
The blaze at the disused Peel House building on St Ann Way began shortly after 4am and has forced the closure of the major road for the the rest of the day.
Four fire crews from Gloucester, Cheltenham and Cirencester pumped canal water into the building from an aerial platform and the fire was put out by 8.45am.
But there are fears that smashed windows and a strong breeze could cause hotspots to reignite.
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A fire crew will be station there throughout the day to monitor the situation.
The building was at the centre of an arson attack just three weeks ago on January 7.
Watch commander Craig Haynes, from Gloucester South fire station, said: "This is a major fire and we are likely to be here for several hours yet.
"We had a call from a security guard and when we arrived there was thick black smoke everywhere. We just couldn't get near it."
A pump that can take 7,000 litres per minute from the adjacent Gloucester and Sharpness Canal came into action at 6.30am.
Late morning saw the arrival of crime scene investigators from Gloucestershire Police and fire officers confirmed that it was an arson attack, with several deliberate fires being created.
Shoppers hoping to reach Gloucester Quays can still do so but will have to avoid the road closure.
More on this story in your copy of tomorrow's Citizen.