A riot broke out at Stocken Prison in Rutland after an inmate tried to stab a prison officer.
Between 60 and 100 prisoners were involved in the six hour riot which began at about 5.30pm on Sunday when an inmate attacked a prison officer with what was described as a “bladed instrument”.
The officer was treated in hospital but discharged the same night.
Prisoners also started a fire in the wing at the Category C prison and tore out electrical wires.
The situation was brought under control by 11pm following the intervention of specially trained riot officers. Four prisoners were taken to hospital and two prison officers have been treated for smoke inhalation.
Steve Gillan, who is general secretary of the prison workers’ union the POA, said: “The incident started with a prison officer being assaulted by a prisoner. The inmate tried to stab him with a bladed instrument.
“The officer was injured but not seriously, in part down to his own professionalism in dealing with the incident and restraining the inmate. Staff then withdrew from the wing and there was then a serious disturbance by prisoners.
“There was a major fire on the wing.”
Mr Gillan said specially trained riot officers were brought in from other prisons to help deal with the incident.
Last night 40 prisoners were moved to other prisons, while a further 60 were moved to other parts of the prison today.
The damage on the wing was being assessed today but Mr Gillan said a “large part of the wing had been damaged”. He anticipated it would be sometime before the wing could be used again.
Mr Gillan added: “If it had not been for the professionalism of the officer involved in the initial incident, this could have been far worse.”
He said the POA would be calling for a health and safety risk assessment to be carried out at the prison and for safer systems for both staff and prisoners to be put in place as a result of the riot.
A Prison Service spokesman added: “Last night, a serious incident of indiscipline on one wing at HMP Stocken was resolved by specially-trained prison officers.
“This kind of behaviour is totally unacceptable. We are absolutely clear that prisoners who behave in this way will be punished and can spend significantly longer behind bars. Those suspected of being actively involved in this incident have already been moved to higher security prisons.”