March 30, 2009
When Fail Britannia isn't busy tagging pensioners for speeding on their Model T vehicles, they are invoking "health and safety" rules to keep neighbors from saving a family trapped in a burning house.
Another witness said some friends and neighbours ignored the police warnings and tried to reach the family with ladders and a hosepipe. But again the police intervened and stopped them.
Chris Richardson, 37, said: 'It was shocking. I couldn't believe the police were acting like that.
'One woman climbed over the garden fence and went to the house but there was a policeman at the back who stopped her.'
Firemen using breathing apparatus-found Mr Colley, a DIY store supervisor, in the master bedroom with his wife. Sophie was in another bedroom and Louis on the landing.
Witnesses said police arrived 'several minutes' before firemen but South Yorkshire police refused to give the exact time, citing 'data protection' rules.
Detective Superintendent Peter McGuinness said: 'I would like to commend our officers. The Fire Brigade were only minutes away but our officers were faced with a raging fire. They handled the incident as professionally as we would expect and then worked long into the night.'
Experts said the blaze was not suspicious.
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