A huge blaze at a Sheffield plastic recycling depot could have been sparked by refuse outside the facility, according to firefighters.
The South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (SYFRS) was called to the scene at 2.30pm on Sunday 14 July, and was still damping down the fire the following day. SYFRS said it was an “extremely challenging incident”.
The fire was initially reported by the SYFRS as originating in Foley Street. However, footage shows the fire at a depot run by recyclers Sheffield Reclaim in Worthing Road. The fire service was unable to confirm this.
Sheffield Reclaim is a charity that supports adults with learning disabilities. The project covers South Yorkshire, North East Derbyshire and East Midlands, and recycles plastics, cans and textiles.
A video clip taken by the fire crew and placed on Youtube shows the extent of the fire, which is said to have contained up to 20 tonnes of material.
A spokesperson said: “We are still investigating the origin and cause of the fire. The initial reports were of a digger and refuse outside the plastics facility, which then spread to the building itself.
“There was a danger of fire spreading to nearby premises, including Veolia. However, fire crews worked quickly to source water from a local canal and put in fire breaks to protect nearby properties.”
Waste management company Veolia has a base for refuse crews on nearby Lumley Street. The firm told MRW its operations had been unaffected by the fire.
Sheffield Reclaim was unavailable for comment.
MRW reported last week that fire chiefs and environment officials were investigating whether tighter controls were needed to prevent fires in the recycling industry.
Some 300 tonnes of WEEE was lost in a fire at Sweeep Kuusakoski’s recycling facility in Kent on 7 July, while “tens of thousands” of tonnes of material caught fire in a blaze that broke out at a West Midlands depot run by J & A Young (Jayplas) on 30 June, according to the fire service.
Images on this page courtesy of South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service.