Fountainbridge Fire: Gas inspectors arrive to determine cause of Edinburgh tenement explosion

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GAS experts have arrived on the scene of an explosion at a tenement block in Edinburgh as an investigation into the cause of the incident gets underway.

An explosion tore through the flat block on Fountainbridge shortly before 5pm on Tuesday, sending rubble and debris crashing onto the street below.

Gas experts joined police and fire crews at the scene on Wednesday morning. Pic: Lisa Ferguson

Gas experts joined police and fire crews at the scene on Wednesday morning. Pic: Lisa Ferguson

Emergency crews rushed to the scene to deal with the blaze, with fire appliances reportedly scrambled from Fife to assist in the effort.

Police and fire crews remained on the scene overnight on Tuesday and into Wednesday to secure the area, while dozens of transport links have been diverted.

Gas inspectors have now been seen assessing damage to the front of the tower block with the use of a fire and rescue crane appliance.

Bystanders told how they heard "loud bangs" before seeing rubble strewn across the street immediately after the incident.

Fire chiefs have warned closures are expected to last for an indefinite period of time while work to ensure the safety of the building is carried out.

In a statement, deputy assistant chief fire officer Alasdair Perry said: “We are working with our colleagues in Police Scotland and other partner agencies to resolve this incident and make the area safe."

“Due to the concern over the structural integrity of building it is anticipated that the surrounding streets are likely to remain closed for a period of time."

The Evening News reported how five children were left in floods of tears while they played in the grounds of Tollcross Primary as the blast happened.

On Tuesday evening, the City of Edinburgh Council tweeted the school, accompanying nursery and community centre would be closed on Wednesday due to fears over the structural integrity of the building.

It is unclear whether the school will reopen later this week.