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Cause of Hessle factory fire revealed by investigators

Original source (on modern site) | Article images: [1]

The suspected cause of a major fire that destroyed a plastics factory and sent Hull into panic has been revealed by the fire service.

Residents living near Bridgewood UK's destroyed factory in Hessle received leaflets on Thursday stating: "We have recently attended an arson incident close to your home. Can you help us?"

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But Humberside Fire & Rescue Service has since apologised for issuing the "wrongly labelled" appeal leaflets, confirming that the incident is not being treated as an arson.

The fire service believes the blaze, which sent plumes of smoke high into the sky and forced nearby residents to evacuate their homes, was in fact accidental.

Residents in Hessle have received this leaflet from Humberside Fire and Rescue (Image: Ivan Morris-Poxton)

A spokeswoman for Humberside Fire and Rescue Service said: "Unfortunately our safety team has given out some of the wrong leaflets, they are addressing this locally, but want to reinforce that we are not looking at this as arson at this time.

"The current preliminary findings are looking as though it will be an accidental fire. We still need to conduct the full investigation, but this is what our initial findings are showing up as.

"We apologise that some wrongly labelled information leaflets have been given out to some of the local residents and we ask for them not to be alarmed."

A full investigation will now be conducted to confirm the initial findings.

The fire started at the factory in Hessle's Priory Tech Park on Wednesday, November 24, at 3.30pm. Remarkably no one was hurt in the inferno, but the factory has been reduced to a burnt out shell. Click here to see more photos of the damage.

Humberside Fire and Rescue worked through the night and into this morning to tackle the blaze, while around 70 homes were evacuated in the area.

As the flames tore through the factory, the roof collapsed and residents living in Hessle explained how they heard "huge explosions every 10 seconds."

The huge factory fire in Hessle at its height on Wednesday afternoon (Image: Paul Chatton)

Most roads have now reopened with residents able to return to their homes.

A spokesman for Humberside Fire and Rescue confirmed today that 300 tonnes of plastic fuelled the blaze.

Speaking on Thursday morning, Jason Kirby, temporary director of people and development at Humberside Fire and Rescue, said: "I'm pleased to say we've made significant progress overnight.

"Firefighters overnight have put in exceptional work. There are still eight fire engines at the scene. We're confident we'll be able to reduce the number through the day.

"Firefighters will be working on the scene throughout the day damping down small pockets of fire still remaining."

The smouldering remains of the Bridgewood factory after the fire, also showing huge areas of foam used to fight the blaze (Image: Gavin Kettlewell)

He added: "There were 300 tonnes of plastics involved in the fire as the main fuel. Firefighting foam has been applied to this.

"We rotate our crews. Yesterday evening, it was initially Hull fire crews responding. They have since been assisted by East Riding, Lincolnshire and North-East Lincolnshire crews.

"The source of the fire is still too early to tell. Fire investigators are on the scene and will be investigating over the next couple of days.

"Local residents are still advised to keep their windows and doors shut, but the risk is now incredibly low."

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