28 April 2021 by Joshua Doherty

Viridor brings in helicopter for landfill fire

Viridor has brought in a helicopter as part of efforts to tackle a major fire which broke out at its landfill site in Bury in the early hours of Monday morning (26 April).

The fire broke out at the Pilsworth Landfill site in Bury, Greater Manchester, at 1am and involved a pile of household waste measuring 150 metres by 100 metres.

Crews on the scene last night dampening down the fire (picture: Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service)

While the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMRFS) declared a major incident, it scaled this down the following day, but crews remain on the scene to suppress the remaining hotspots.

Yesterday afternoon, Viridor said the fire is now believed to be a surface fire and not deep-seated in the landfill, and the helicopter will be used to “complete fire-fighting efforts”.


A spokesperson from Viridor said: Viridor staff have been working withthe Greater Manchester Fire & Rescue Service to assist with the services efforts to extinguish the landfill fire, Viridor is very grateful for the services efforts which have brought the fire under control.

In addition to the traditional fire-fighting response, Viridor has brought in a helicopter capable of depositing two tonnes of water with every pass to complete fire-fighting efforts.

“Viridor has brought in a helicopter capable of depositing two tonnes of water with every pass to complete fire-fighting efforts”

Viridor spokesperson

Viridor says it will recirculate the water at the site to further soak any affected areas, additionally smothering these with a combination of soil and sand. 

The company added that it wishes to apologise to local residents for any inconvenience caused and thank them for their patience. 

Quickly and effectively 

GMFRS crew member Val Hussain, said:Im pleased to say that our firefighters’ hard work throughout the night has allowed us to contain this fire and scale back the Major Incident declared yesterday. 

I cannot fault the professionalism of our firefighters, who have responded to all of these incidents quickly and effectively. As a result of that work we have been able to decrease our presence at the site and continue to work hard to bring this to a resolution as soon as possible. 


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