Fires hit Veolia and JWS Waste sites

Fires broke out at waste sites in Hampshire and Salford over the weekend, in the latest incidents to hit the waste and recycling sector.

In Hampshire, fire crews were called at around 8pm on Friday (April 24) evening to Veolia’s Blue Haze landfill site on Alderholt Road in Ringwood to attend to a fire involving 300-400 tonnes of household waste.

Veolia's Blue Haze landfill has suffered a series of fires (picture credit: Lorraine and Keith Bowdler)
Veolia’s Blue Haze landfill has suffered a series of fires (picture credit: Lorraine and Keith Bowdler)

The 29 hectare site has suffered a series of fires over recent years, with incidents including fires in 2011, 2013 and 2014.

Blue Haze accepts around 155,000 tonnes of non-hazardous waste a year from commercial, industrial and household sources. The site is also home to a landfill gas plant.

It is unclear why the Veolia site, within the New Forest, has suffered so many fires. To tackle the latest blaze, firefighters used three jets, one water bowser and two 20 tonne excavators to tackle the blaze.

In a statement, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “Five pumps attended along with two water carriers. Four pumps came from Hampshire – Ringwood, Burley and Lyndhurst and one over the border from Dorset Fire and Rescue Service. One water carrier was from Hampshire – Fordingbridge and one over the border from Dorset Fire and Rescue Service.”

A spokeswoman for the Fire Service confirmed to letsrecycle.com that that the fire was put out about 48 hours after starting, having been extinguished yesterday (26 April).

In a statement, Veolia said: “On the evening of Friday 24 April the emergency services were called to attend a fire at Blue Haze Landfill site. There were no injuries to people or damage to property.

“We take all health and safety issues very seriously and an investigation is ongoing into the cause of the fire.”

JWS Waste

The incident occurred over the same weekend that six crews were called to JWS Waste on Frederick Road in Salford at 11pm last night (April 26) following reports of a building on fire.

The site is operated by JWS Waste, which supplies skips to companies throughout the North West and describes its four acre site which includes a trade waste materials recycling facility (MRF) as “one of the largest recycling and processing facilities in the region”.

Firefighters attending the scene in Salford last night
Firefighters attending the scene in Salford last night

Operating since 1983, the company’s managing director is Robin Tweedale, who previously held high-ranking positions at UK Waste Management and Biffa.

Firefighters from Salford, Broughton, Agecroft, Eccles, Moss Side and Manchester Central Fire Stations were sent to JWS Waste where they found “a large amount of recycling waste on fire”. The fire affected unprocessed construction waste in the MRF.

Fire Service group manager Jon Aspinall said: “When crew arrived they were greeted with a large fire and a lot of smoke. We are currently working hard with the site owners to get control of the fire as quickly as possible.

“In addition to fighting the fire, we are also conducting an environmental plan to make sure that any water used is disposed of safely.”

The Fire Service added that the cause of the fire is unknown.

Speaking to letsrecycle.com this morning, a Fire Service spokeswoman said: “The blaze is under control however there is still a quantity of waste matter within the building that is still smouldering. It has been scaled down to three fire engines.”

JWS

An employee for JWS, which is operational today, told letsrecycle.com: “It has not caused too much of a problem and could have been a lot worse.”

In a statement issued today (April 27), JWS said that it planned to be “fully operational” within 24 hours after the incident. It added: “There has been no significant damage to the plant or the buildings at the site largely due to the speedy response of the fire service and JWS Staff. Thankfully no one has been injured during the fire.”

Mr Tweedale commented: “Thanks to the immediate response of the fire service and our staff, the fire has been contained to a specific area on the site. JWS Waste have focused on minimising any disruption to our customers, maintaining collection services and plan to have the MRF and all services fully operational within 24 hours subject to the approval of the emergency services – a thorough investigation into the cause of the blaze has already commenced.”

[Story updated 27/04/2015 at 2.15pm and 28/04/2015 at 9am]

Subscribe for free

Subscribe to receive our newsletters and to leave comments.

The Blog Box

Other Publications from
The Environment Media Group

Back to top