One killed as blaze rips through property in Lerwick

© Shetland NewsEmergency services were called to the blaze in a two-storey dwelling house in Burns Lane just before midnight on Saturday evening.
Emergency services were called to the blaze in a two-storey dwelling house in Burns Lane just before midnight on Saturday evening.

One person died after a major fire took hold of a property in Lerwick in the late hours of Saturday evening.

Police, fire and ambulance crews were all at the scene of the serious blaze in the town’s harbour area but were unable to save the casualty.

Smoke could be seen from miles outside of the town as the ferocious fire took hold in the centre of the historic town.

Investigations are still underway and, with the property cordoned-off last night, police said next of kin had still to be informed.

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Councillor for Lerwick North, Stephen Leask, yesterday spoke of his sadness, saying: “It is an exceptionally sad day for Lerwick and Shetland.

“We have to think of the family and we offer our deepest sympathies and condolences to them.

“Crews from all over the island came to tackle the fire and their response was incredible.

“We will wait and see what is established from the investigations conducted by the fire service and police, but it is most significant that we very much think of the family, whom this will impact upon.”

Reports of a developing fire in Burns Lane, near to the Victoria Pier, were first received at 11.59pm on Saturday.

Five fire engines were sent to the two-storey building, where firefighters in breathing apparatus tackled the blaze for nearly three hours before it was brought under control.

A spokesman confirmed two crews from Brae were joined by single appliances from Lerwick and Sandwick and a rapid response unit from Bixter.

Police confirmed investigations are underway to establish the cause of the fire and they continue to work closely with colleagues from the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

Investigation teams were yesterday travelling to Shetland, with detailed inquries expected to begin today.

Yesterday the area surrounding Burns Lane had been cordoned off with police tape.

One fire crew from Lerwick was redeployed to property around 11.50am to make it safe and remove loose roof tiles.

A Police Scotland spokeswoman said: “A person has died as a result of a fire in a house.

“Next of kin have yet to be informed.”