Fire services tend to two waste fires ignited during Bonfire weekend

Two large fires have been blazing at sites storing recycled waste during the Bonfire Night weekend, in Stoke-on-Trent and Walsall.

A fire which broke out at the former site of Hanbury Plastics Recycling (HPR) in Milton, Stoke-on-Trent has been confirmed as arson, just nine months after a previous attack at the same site. Staffordshire Fire and Rescue received over 50 calls about the fire on Saturday (4 November) which saw black smoke rising over Stoke-on-Trent from the site on Redhills Road. Three engines responded and the blaze was contained in the early hours of Sunday morning, but firefighters remained at the scene throughout Monday to tackle the smouldering waste.

On Sunday evening (5 November) West Midlands firefighters were called to a blaze at the Fryers Road Household Waste Recycling Centre (HWRC) in Walsall’s Leamore Enterprise Park. Up to 70 firefighters were working during the height of the fire, utilising water pumped from the nearby canal, and remained on the scene throughout Monday. It appears the blaze was located inside the main site building, as crews were forced to cut open the shutters with angle grinders to reach the source of the fire.

Group Commander for the West Midlands Fire Service, Martin Ward-White, said the service had “ten appliances in attendance along with colleagues from ambulance, local authority, the Environment Agency and other agencies. We are mitigating the impact on the local area and are working to bring this incident to a close in a timely manner”.