South West Wales

Fforestfach tyre fire: open day insight for residents

Fforestfach fire
Image caption Firefighters spent three weeks tackling the blaze and temporary dams were created on-site

People affected by a three-week tyre blaze in Swansea have been speaking to the emergency services.

The former Mettoy plant at Fforestfach has been demolished following the fire in June which spread clouds of smoke and caused traffic chaos for days.

Previously unseen video and photographs were shown at Sunday's open day.

Fire chiefs said it had been a "complex and unusual" incident and residents. A 42-year-old man has been arrested over alleged illegal dumping of tyres.

The event from 11:00 to 16:00 BST on Sunday took place at the Fforestfach park and ride site next to the scene of the fire.

Firefighters, police, council workers, health professionals and environmental specialists shared their experiences with residents with the aim of giving them a better understanding of the complex nature of the fire and the impact it had.

Shared insights

Roger Thomas, group manager of Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said, "This was one of the most complex and unusual fires we have faced and we were very grateful for the support and understanding of the community during this incident.

"There was a great team effort from all of the agencies and the fire was put out quicker than we initially anticipated.

"The site has been demolished and cleared which gives us an opportunity to invite the public along to meet those agencies involved in dealing with the fire so that they can learn more about what happened.

"It's also an opportunity for residents and businesses in the area to share their experiences with us. We hope people will come along and gain an insight into this very unusual incident and the way we responded to it."

'Good progress'

Other authorities involved in tackling the incident include Swansea council, South Wales Police, Environment Agency Wales, Public Health Wales and Abertawe Bro Morgannwg University Health Board.

Mary Youell from the Environment Agency said: "The warehouse was full of about 5000 tonnes of waste material. Now that waste material was illegally deposited and stored there. "So we are making very good progress into our investigation into what happened and we fully expect to catch the people responsible for this."

It took 23 days to put out the fire involving 5,000 tonnes of tyre flock which broke out at the disused toy factory on 16 June.

The burning material had to be removed using specialist plant equipment and immersed in temporary dams created on site and large water-filled containers.

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