Smurfit Kappa ‘resumes some work’ at Nechells after fire

A fire involving 8,000 tonnes of cardboard broke out at Smurfit Kappa’s paper mill in Birmingham last night, with the West Midlands Fire Service declaring a major incident.

The fire crews worked on tackling the fire overnight (picture: West Midlands Fire Service)

Twenty fire engines and 110 fire fighters were needed at the height of the fire which broke out on12 Sunday) at the plant on Mount Street in Nechells.

Overnight, the fire service said “excellent progress” had been made in tackling the fire and bringing it under control.

The fire service said Smurfit Kappa was able to “resume some of its usual operations this morning, with fire investigators working to determine the cause of the fire”.

A comment from Smurfit Kappa is expected soon.

Challenge

The fire fighters said they face “challenging conditions”, including from the amount of smoke created.

The amount of smoke created posed a challenge to the fire crews (picture: West Midlands Fire Service)

At one point, it was pumping and relaying 8,000 litres of water per minute from a nearby canal, with two hydraulic platforms and eight supporting vehicles also involved.

The fire service explained it had been working with several other agencies, including the Environment Agency.

The site faced a large-scale fire incident in 2013, which saw 70 firefighters “tackle a blaze involving thousands tonnes of recovered cardboard material” (see letsrecycle.com story).

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