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Probe begins into firefighter deaths.

THE Fire Brigades Union said it will conduct its own investigation into the deaths of two firefighters killed in a tower block blaze.

James Shears, 35, inset left, and Alan Bannon, 38, inset right, died as they tried to contain the fire in Shirley Towers, Church Street, Southampton.

Police investigations were launched yesterday as fire chiefs said they could not yet confirm if ''something went wrong''.

The Fire Brigades Union said last night it is carrying out its own inquiry into the causes of the deaths, and would share its findings with the police and the Health and Safety Executive.

General secretary Matt Wrack said: ''We want to find out what happened urgently, so that we can take steps to ensure that it never happens again.

''I have already spoken to the police to assure them of our support and co-operation.'' Hampshire chief fire officer John Bonney said officers were ''valiant'' in ''extremely difficult circumstances'' but refused to give precise details of how they died.

Mr Shears, fromPoole in Dorset, left a widow Carla and two young boys and Mr Bannon, from Southampton, was married to Charlotte and the couple had a young daughter.

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TRIBUTE: A firefighter lays flowers above, and shows his emotions, right, and some of the other tributes to the victims, above right
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Publication:Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Apr 8, 2010
Words:218
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