Fly-tipped sofa alight in Sunderland back lane as firefighters called to scene

An investigation has been launched after a sofa set, believed to be fly-tipped in a Sunderland back lane, caught fire on Wednesday morning (January 20).

Wednesday, 20th January 2021, 3:57 pm

Two crews from Sunderland Central attended the fire in the back lane of Cairo Street after a nearby resident awoke to see the flames at 6.40am.

Vijayalakshmi Subramani, who is known as VJ, fears the fire could have been much worse had firefighters not arrived when they did.

The 35-year-old mum said: “My son woke up today very early. That’s when we noticed. If not, it could have been a big disaster.

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The sofa was alight in the back lane of Cairo Street, Sunderland.

“The air vents are melted at my neighbour’s house and it was moments away before it caught fire to the store room and then mine.”

The official cause of the fire is under investigation but VJ believes the sofa was set alight deliberately after it was dumped in the back lane the day before.

"The fire was caused by fly-tipping of a sofa set. I didn’t see who initiated this fire or who fly-tipped but I saw yesterday evening those sofas were outside my neighbour’s house,” she added.

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"We have a lot fly-tipping on our area – it is a problem.

“The fire brigade with two fire engines were here within 5 minutes. Thanks to them and we really appreciate their timely response.”

A Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue spokeswoman said: “At 06:40 this morning, we received a report of a sofa on fire outdoors.

“Two crews from Sunderland Central attended and extinguished the fire, with the incident concluded by 06.48am.

“The cause of the fire is under investigation.”

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