Reading fire: Dramatic moment man is winched to safety from huge fire at building site as town centre is engulfed by thick clouds of black smoke

This is the dramatic moment a workman being lifted to safety by a crane, after becoming trapped on the roof of a building that has burst into flames in Reading town centre this morning.

The terrifying footage shows a huge building become consumed in thick black smoke, with a man stranded at the top of the structure next to the flames.

Thanks to the quick thinking of nearby workers, a construction crane is close by and is used to help him. 

The man struggles to get into the crate, due to the thickness of the smoke, but is eventually lifted to safety, much to the relief of onlookers on the street. 

Numerous images and videos have emerged on social media showing a major fire spewing smoke from an under construction building, near the town’s train station. 

A huge fire has broken out in a busy town centre, sending clouds of smoke into the air

Images and videos have emerged on social media showing thick black smoke spewing from an under construction

It is unknown whether anyone is still on the site or whether there has been any injuries

People have been told to avoid the area, with nearby locals told to close their windows and doors, as smoke can now from villages several miles away. 

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue were called to fire near Napier Road in Reading at 11.38am this morning, with a number of crews and emergency service vehicles in attendance. 

It is unknown whether anyone is still on the site or whether there has been any injuries. 

A number of fire crews and emergency services are currently at the scene. 

Office workers at Thames Tower, which is very close to the on fire construction site, saw the flames first hand and were asked to evacuated around 11.40am.

According to a Reading Chronicle reporter, The windows have melted off the building that is on fire.   

Thames Valley Police have closed Friar Street, but Great Western Railway say the fire has not affected train services yet. 

Due to an incident, Thames Travel say the 143 and X40 services are unable to serve Friar Street, Station Road and Forbury Road. 

In a statement, Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue said: ‘At 11:38am on Thursday, 23 November, we received reports of a fire near Napier Road in Reading.

‘A number of our crews are currently on the scene. While emergency services work, we ask that people avoid the area where possible and close windows and doors if you live or work nearby.

‘Thank you for your patience while we deal with this incident. Updates will continue to be provided through our website incident feed.’

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