Image Credit: North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue
A serious fire at a recycling facility containing around 15,000 tonnes of tyres in Sherburn-in-Elmet, North Yorkshire has created a toxic plume of black smoke that is visible from space.More Waste Management World Articles
At 09.00 yesterday morning fire crews first arriving on the scene reported a large amount of tyres are on fire. Crews initially used three hose reel jets to tackle the blaze, while the facility’s owner, Newgen Recycling, attempted to create a fire break using an excavator.
Around an hour later the crew in attendance requested backup in the form of an additional 14 fire engines along with a High Volume Pump which can move large quantities of water over a larger distance than a normal fire engine.
Fire crews initially though that the fire could contain up to around 1000 tonnes of end-of-life tyres, and deployed a water curtain as a cooling method to try to restrict the spread of the fire.
However, the Service said that by 15.00 yesterday the incident had developed further and there were fears that up to 15,000 tonnes of waste tyres were involved.
By this morning the Fire Service said that the blaze was considerably smaller than yesterday, but access to it was still very difficult.
The Service explained that the high volume pump was being used to relay water from a pond around the edge of the site, with five water curtains put in place early on in the incident to protect the plant building on site overnight.
Consideration is now being given to redeploying them to other areas of the site. The crews on scene are said to be assessing and monitoring the fire, and working to stop the fire spreading.
“We are working with partner agencies including the Environment Agency and North Yorkshire Police,” commented North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue in a statement
Newgen Recycling had been using the facility to recycle waste tyres into rubber chippings that is said are ideal for use in play areas due to the use of special coatings which don’t rub off on clothing.
The Fire Service advised this morning that local residents continue to keep their doors and windows closed.
According to a BBC News report which can be viewed below, the plume of smoke reached around 6000 feet and was visible from space.
Box Out in Cutting the Risk of Landfill Fires…Tyre fires are a particularly worrying event since they are difficult to extinguish and produce emissions with serious, acute and chronic health implications. Further to this, the risks posed by the emissions are not completely localised and can extend for many kilometres downwind of the fire.
Tackling Tyre Waste
With the rapidly growing number of vehicles around the world, the disposal of end-of-life tyres is a growing issue. Often simply dumped by the million to pose a serious environmental, health and fire risk, the technology to recover higher value materials and energy from waste tyres is moving forward. By Ben Messenger.
New Recycling Machine to Pulverise and Devulcanize Tyre Waste
Germany based Pallmann, a manufacturer of size reduction machinery, has launched a new grinding system for recycling of vulcanized rubber waste back into fine powder for direct reuse in rubber processing.