Third major waste fire of week at Siteserv’s Glamorgan plant

A large fire containing 2,000 tonnes of waste broke out at Siteserv in the Vale of Glamorgan last night, the third major waste fire of the week and the third at this particular site in four years.

South Wales Fire & Rescue Service (SWFRS) was called to the site last night (2 March) and is working with Natural Resources Wales and Vale of Glamorgan Council to limit the impact of the fire.

The Siteserv facility is permitted to store various forms of non-hazardous household, commercial and industrial waste. The fire is thought to involve about 2,000 tonnes of waste.

This is the third major waste fire of the week, after DS Smith’s Willenhall paper recycling plant and Devon Contract Waste’s Envirohub materials recovery facility.   

The blaze is also the fourth to break out on the Llandow Industrial Estate in the past four years. Two of those have taken place at Siteserv.

A fire involving an estimated 1,000 tonnes of mixed household waste broke out at SiteServ Recycling’s plant building on Bonfire Night 2013, which police said this fire ‘totally damaged’ the premises. A matter of weeks later around 60 firefighters were needed to deal with a second fire at another building owned by the company.

Risk to local people low

Public Health Wales is working with partners to assess the situation. Andrew Kibble of the Public Health Wales Environmental Public Health Team advised: “Fires involving these types of waste materials are, unfortunately, relatively common and as a result there is considerable information on the risk they present to public health. Any smoke produced may contain a mixture of irritant gases, combustion products and particulate matter. In addition the smoke can be acrid with odours that are unpleasant and annoying.

“We recommend people do all that they can to stay out of the smoke and if at home, close doors and windows. It would also be beneficial to open doors and windows when smoke is not in the vicinity to allow fresh air in.

“Evidence from fires involving similar waste materials show that staying indoors and avoiding the plume should ensure that the risk to the health of local people is low. If people experience any symptoms these will disappear very quickly once the smoke has passed and should not result in any long-term health problems. There is also no evidence that this fire involves asbestos either in the waste materials or building itself.”