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Editor’s comment: Why so long to tell us cause of explosion?

PUBLISHED: 08:00 21 October 2017

Damage to flats after an explosion in Ardleigh Green Road

Damage to flats after an explosion in Ardleigh Green Road

Archant

Three weeks after police closed the investigation into the explosion at the Bridge Point flats in Hornchurch, saying “the exact cause of the fire cannot be ascertained” and no one would be held accountable, Swan Housing Association announces it was caused by a gas canister.

It seems like a lack of communication.

The residents who lost their homes, and the others who were shocked and shaken by what happened in January have waited all this time to find out what happened and why.

Why has it taken so long and how did the police not know this before? This week they say there were a number of gas canisters in the flat where the blast happened.

At least there finally seems to be some movement on rebuilding the flats which were damaged.

Those seven homes have been empty for nine months – at a time when so many people are looking for somewhere to live.

The sooner Swan can demolish the wreckage and rebuild the better.

Another lack of communication is highlighted in the latest episode in the Orchard Village saga.

What a mess that estate in Rainham is in.

Yesterday (Thurs), residents were expecting to be without running water and heating for a second time in a month to allow for planned maintenance work.

When our reporter asked Circle Housing Association – which manages the estate – what the work was we were told (rightly, as it turned out) that it was being done by energy company SSE.

When we asked SSE what was happening we were told it had no record of any work and we should contact Essex and Suffolk Water.

Essex and Suffolk Water said it was nothing to do with them.

We then obtained a copy of the letter sent to residents from SSE saying it would be carrying out planned maintenance work.

It’s easy to see why the Orchard residents are so frustrated if they get that runaround every time there is an issue on the estate.

And, as we have reported many times, there are plenty of issues.

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