Weedon nut factory fire water filtered and recycled

Weedon fire The fire in Weedon is being allowed to burn out under control

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Water used to tackle a factory fire in Northamptonshire is being filtered to stop it polluting a river and canal.

The fire at Quality Nut Products in Weedon, near Daventry, started on 26 June and is being allowed to burn out under controlled conditions.

Water sprayed on to the fire is going into drains that supply a village pond.

To protect the nearby Grand Union Canal and River Nene, oily contaminants are being filtered out before the water is reused by firefighters.

The pond was originally kept in case of fire at a nearby munitions factory, which has now been demolished.

Later it became the catchment for the drains on the Cavalry Hill Industrial Park, where the factory stands.

Firefighters called to the burning factory tried at first to prevent water getting into the drains, but once it was realised the seed and peanuts stored there would burn for a long time, their priority became to protect nearby watercourses.

Protecting waterways

The boating season was just beginning on the river and canal.

Luke Hobson from Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue said the answer was to recycle the water.

The Environment Agency hired a contractor to contain the water and to filter off the worst of the contaminants, which were taken away by tanker.

An Environment Agency spokesman said: "The fire water run-off can strip oxygen from watercourses.

"It is also black and oily in appearance.

"We have been working with the fire and rescue service to an attempt to limit fire water run-off from the site.

"Unfortunately the large quantities of water used to fight the fire mean that it has reached the village pond that connects to the River Nene.

"Up to this point, we have not seen any evidence that any fire water has got into the Nene."

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