Northumbria Police apologises for Hillsborough Disaster tweet

A police officer has apologised for a tweet about the Liverpool car park fire which has been construed as a reference to the Hillsborough disaster.

The offending tweet

Northumbria Police received complaints after Curtis Ritchie, a serving constable, posted a message saying: "Have they started blaming the police yet????"

One person contacted the force to express concern, claiming it was a "disparaging remark about Scousers".

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Another sent a message to the officer's bosses in Berwick, Northumberland, saying: "Can you please ask pc Curtis Ritchie (8873) to elaborate on his recent comments to the people of Liverpool & particularly families of the 96 ?"

Northumbria Police issued an apology

The force would not name the officer involved in the Twitter row but said he had apologised.

A spokesman said: "Northumbria Police does not condone the comments made by one of its officers on Twitter, it is clearly unacceptable.

"The force expects all its officers to uphold the highest levels of professionalism.

"The officer involved has expressed regret for any offence and upset caused and he has received management advice regarding his actions."

Northumbria Police issued an apology

The fire, which started in a car park next to the Liverpool Echo Arena on New Year's Eve, destroyed up to 1,600 cars.

Meanwhile, insurers have estimated there will be claims worth £20 million following the fire.

The Association of British Insurers said customers have claimed for belongings as well as the incinerated vehicles, and some could claim transport expenses they incurred.

Rob Cummings, its head of motor and liability, said: "Insurance exists for just this sort of event, and insurers were working hard over the bank holiday to get on with processing people's claims as quickly as possible.

"Customers affected should be reassured that insurers are expecting to pay out around £20 million to help get them back on the road."