15.12.16 Fleet M3 service station fire engulfs restaurant building


The blaze erupted in the restaurant at Fleet services on the M3, leading police to temporarily close the southbound lanes.

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said 100 fire fighters were sent to the scene.  Fire fighters from Surrey were also called; crews stopped the blaze spreading to the other buildings.  The fire was brought under control in the early hours.  No-one was injured. 

Crews remained at the scene to dampen down and prevent any re-ignition.

The service station on the southbound carriageway and the slip road leading to it on the M3 remained closed.  The footbridge which runs over Fleet services on the M3, was also closed due to smoke logging.

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service group commander Brian Rudman said fire fighters were confronted with a "severe fire which was escalating quickly".

He said: "The fire was very intense and spread to other parts of the service area but thanks to the hard work of the crews we've managed to save sections and some will be able to re-open."  The service said an investigation into the cause of the fire was underway.

Welcome Break's Rod McKie said the rear of building had been destroyed.  He stated that the company hoped to re-open the fuel forecourt and temporary retail facilities.

"We are extremely grateful to the fire fighters who tackled the blaze and will assist with their investigations.  Most important is that no-one was hurt and obviously now we'll assess the damage and work out how quick we can get Fleet Services back up and running."

Fleet North remained fully open.

The services between junctions 4a and five were opened in 1973 and include a food court, petrol station and hotel.

Story collated by Liz Turnbull.

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Registered Office:  Southwold House, 66 Botley Road, Park Gate, Southampton, United Kingdom

Company number: 07810000