Fire at Swindon Skips in Cheney Manor Industrial Estate still burning

This Is Wiltshire: Fire at Swindon Skips Fire at Swindon Skips

THE cause of the fire at Cheney Manor, which continues into its seventh day today, will not be investigated by the fire service.

Responsibility for monitoring the fire at Swindon Skips in Brindley Close was handed over to the owner and the local authority by Wiltshire Fire & Rescue at 6pm on Sunday.

The fire was fuelled by 750 tonnes of building and timber recycling material but, once it had been contained to one part of the site, it was allowed to burn itself out as of Thursday.

However, too little evidence remains easily accessible for investigators to establish exactly why the blaze began, and as a consequence they have left the case unsolved.

A spokesman said: “There is unlikely to be an investigation into the causes of the fire. There was very little evidence that we could easily access early doors.

“If there is any CCTV the police are able to take down, happy days, but I suspect it will remain unknown.”

The Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA), a professional membership association and registered charity, has begun its own nationwide investigation into reducing fires at waste and recycling sites.

Around 50 delegates took part in last week’s Fire Futures Forum on waste management and recycling fires, including representatives from local and national government, the Environment Agency, insurance companies and the waste management industry.

The event included debate on the factors at the root of waste management facility fires and what could be done collectively to address the issues and thereby reduce fire-related incidents.

Delegates also discussed the likely consequences of failure – politically, legally, economically, environmentally and socially.

While attendees agreed that there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ regulatory measures that could be introduced, the CFOA will now be working with the industry and stakeholders to produce a post-forum report in early 2014.

This report will outline the discussions held and signpost the direction to be taken in order to achieve the objective of reducing waste and recycling fire incidents.

Roy Wilsher, CFOA operations director said: “Today has given us the opportunity to work with partners to set out a road map towards our collective goal of reducing fires at waste and recycling sites.

“This issue is not just about the industry or the fire service: we all have to work together on this, and we are here to find and implement solutions.”

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