Essex County Fire and Rescue Service

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Unattended bonfire destroys outbuildings and vehicles

Lynfords Drive, Wickford
08/05/2018 @ 21:24
Incident Number: 77016
In attendance: 1 x Wickford, 1 x Rayleigh Weir, 2 x Basildon


Firefighters were called to a fire involving several vehicles on farmland this evening.

On arrival, the officer in charge immediately requested further support due to the size of the fire and reported that a number of outbuildings were also involved.

Firefighters liaised with the Electricity Board to isolate supply to the overhead power cables at the scene, to ensure the area was safe.

The incident was divided into sectors to allow firefighters to surround the fire as efficiently as possible. This means that in some places, crews were actively tackling the fire, while in others they focused on containing it.

Due to the large amount of smoke being created, firefighters also worked alongside the police to keep the nearby road closed to traffic.

Firefighters extinguished the fire by 0.10am and remained at the scene until 2.59am to dampen down remaining hotspots.

Several sheds, outbuildings, vehicles and caravans - covering an area totalling 20 metres by 30 metres - have been completely destroyed by the fire.

This fire was caused accidentally by a nearby bonfire which was left unattended.

Incident Commander Craig McLellan said: "This incident shows just how dangerous it is to leave bonfires to burn unattended.

"Even if you're only planning on burning a small bonfire, you should stay with it at all times until it is fully extinguished. Particularly during hot weather where the ground is dry, there is always the possibility that it can spread out of control if left alone.

"In this case, the wind caused the bonfire to spread to nearby buildings - causing severe damage."

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