Two dead after explosion at fireworks factory in Stafford

Two people have tragically died after the massive fireworks factory explosion in Stafford, police have confirmed.

The two men feared to have died in the blaze have been named as 41-year-old Simon Hillier and Stewart Staples, 57, who are both from Cannock, Staffordshire.

Father of one Simon Hillier, 41, died in the blaze

Father of one Simon Hillier, 41, died in the blaze

Staffordshire Police confirmed the industrial estate where SP Fireworks is located will remain cordoned off for the foreseeable future while searches continue.

The 53-year-old man arrested in connection with the incident has been released from custody no further action and police are treating him as a witness.

VICTIMS OF FIREWORK BLAZE

Stewart Staples, 57, has been confirmed dead by police

Supt Ian Coxhead, from Staffordshire Police, said: “This is a tragic development in a rare and challenging incident, our sympathies go out to the families of those who have sadly lost their lives.

“Our primary concern has been locating those who were unaccounted for.

“Our searches of the building will continue over the weekend as we work to establish the cause of the fire but it will take sometime due to the unstable structure of the building and dangerous environment we’re working in.

“Residents and businesses are thanked for their understanding and patience. We will work as quickly as we can to get Tilcon Avenue back to normality and will keep the affected community updated.”

Police are continuing to search the scene of an explosion, as tributes for both of the men found dead flood in.

FIRE DAMAGE FIREWORKS FACTORY

The investigation into the cause of the explosion continues