Homeless man tries to set himself on fire in Portsmouth city centre
A HOMELESS man who tried to set himself on fire in the city centre was left unscathed before he was detained by police.
The man, in his 30s, set his top alight but flames did not take hold during the incident on Commercial Road near River Island on Tuesday at about 12.30pm.
Police and ambulance attended the scene with officers detaining him under the Mental Health Act before he was taken to hospital.
A police spokeswoman said: ‘We were called to a report of a concern for the welfare of a man in his 30s on Commercial Road.
‘Officers attended and the man was safely detained under the Mental Health Act. He was not injured.
‘The fire was out by the time officers attended. He was taken to hospital under the Mental Health Act.’
A spokesman for South Central Ambulance Service said: ‘The patient who set their clothing briefly on fire was not injured and didn’t require our services in the end.’
Firefighters were not needed to attend the incident.
Claire Currie, public health consultant at Portsmouth City Council, said: ‘Anyone in Portsmouth who feels they're struggling with their mental health, doesn’t need to suffer alone, there is support available.
‘The council provides services and promotes services provided by others. Services such as Positive Minds and Every Mind Matters – further support and information can be found on our website portsmouth.gov.uk/mentalhealth.
‘For anyone concerned about someone they think is sleeping rough and possibly struggling with their mental health, please get in touch with StreetLink.
‘This service only needs a few basic details so that local agencies can try to connect the person sleeping rough to offer the available help. The website is streetlink.org.uk.’
:: Contact Positive Minds Portsmouth at www.positivemindsportsmouth.org.uk or call (023) 9282 4795.
:: For homeless support visit the Civic Officers between Monday to Thursday, 9am-5pm and Friday 9am-4pm (no appointment needed for initial advice). For housing support phone (023) 9283 4989.
:: A limited service is available outside of these hours for crisis situations - call (023) 9282 4244.