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Firefighters are warning people of the risk of sunlight blazes following a fire in a block of flats on High Street in Penge yesterday afternoon.
A flat on the third floor of the four storey block was badly damaged by the blaze, and two men and a woman from a neighbouring flat were led to safety by firefighters wearing breathing apparatus.
The alarm was raised by a passer by who saw smoke coming from the property. Four fire engines and 21 firefighters and officers attended the scene.
The cause of the fire is believed to be accidental, due to sunlight reflected on a mirror.
A spokesperson for the London Fire Brigade said: “These sort of incidents are not as rare as you would think. In the last five years we've seen over 100 fires caused by the sun's rays.”
"Our advice is to make sure that you keep mirrors, crystals, glass ornaments and other reflective items out of direct sunlight at all times.”
The Brigade was called at 1551 and the fire was under control by 1647. Fire crews from West Norwood, Bromley and Woodside fire stations attended the scene.