7-1-13 – Location – West Midlands Britain – Industrial Fire

A major fire


that has broken out at a factory in Smethwick involving 100,000 tonnes of plastic recycling bundle material, is believed to have been started by a Chinese lantern falling on the material.

The fire is one of the biggest ever to have occurred in the West Midlands.

A spokesperson for West Midlands Fire Service said: “We believe the fire was started by a Chinese lantern. One was apparently seen floating into the site.”

The spokesperson said they are hoping to obtain CCTV of the incident.

Approximately150 firefighters are currently at the scene battling the blaze, which is sending thick plumes of smoke rising 6,000ft in the air.

Firefighters were called to attend the scene at 11pm on Sunday evening at the recycling plant J&A Young on Dartmouth Road.

Two firefighters were taken to hospital and treated for minor injuries.

The spokesperson said earlier: “The incident involves a very large and dramatic fire at a recycling plant in Smethwick. We currently have 150 fire fighters tackling blaze.

“There are 35 fire engines and three hydraulic platforms in attendance. To assist with water supplies there are two high volume pumping units being used.”

No injuries have been reported and residents in the surrounding area are being advised to stay indoors and keep their windows shut. 

Motorists are also being urged to avoid the M5 where possible.