Firefighters tackled a fire in the top floor and roof space of a three storey block of flats in Chelmsford in the early hours of this morning.

The top floor and roof of the building were completely alight.

Crews are used one main jet, one hose reel jet and the aerial ladder platform to tackle the fire.

All the residents were accounted for.

By 3.36am, firefighters had the fire under control by and were dampening down hot-spots on the roof.

The Red Cross were called to help a number of people who were left homeless as a result of this fire.

The fire was extinguished by 4.51am.

Sub Officer Syd Barrett, Chelmsford, said: "When crews arrived there was a well developed fire in the roof void of the block which had broken through the roof of the building. The fire did not spread to an adjacent block.

"We made sure the entire building had been evacuated, in all around 30 people safely escaped the building, none of them will be able to return because of the damage caused by this fire.

"We were hampered by a poor water supply but were able to use the aerial ladder platform to good effect to douse the fire from above. We had it under control by around 03:30hrs and continued using the ALP to dampen it down and extinguish the fire for around another hour-and-a-half."

The block is a housing association building and the housing association has been informed.

An investigation will take place to establish the cause of the fire.