Westwood fire, Margate September 2018
10 October - update
The fire inside an industrial unit in Enterprise Way, Westwood, Margate, is now fully extinguished after 25 days of firefighting.
On Wednesday, 10 October, the emergency phase of the incident led by Kent Fire and Rescue Service will come to a close and firefighting operations will cease, ahead of schedule. Duty of care will then be handed to the land owner, and Thanet District Council will be the facilitators to the recovery process.
The fire service now deems the site safe in terms of the fire being fully out, and therefore will no longer have a presence there. Public Health England’s advice to close windows and doors has now been lifted, as smoke is no longer coming from the site.
On behalf of all the agencies involved throughout this incident, Kent Fire and Rescue Service would like to thank everyone living and working near the site for their cooperation over the past three weeks. The fire caused great inconvenience to some and we would like to thank you for your support while firefighters worked to make the area safe.
26 September - update
Firefighters have been tackling a fire at the Westwood industrial estate, Enterprise Way, Margate since Saturday 15 September, and they are expected to have a presence on site until late October. Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) would like to thank the local community for their patience and support while crews work hard to make the area safe.
Watch the below video for the latest on the fire from KFRS Director of Operations Sean Bone-Knell.
Smoke in the area
Understandably people will have concerns regarding the smoke as a result of the fire.
Public Health England Consultant Dr Claire Winslade talks below about what symptoms people living and working nearby may experience, and where they can go for guidance.
Advice from Public Health England
- People living and working in areas affected by smoke should stay indoors and keep their doors and windows closed
- Motorists who have to travel through the smoke should keep windows closed, turn off air conditioning and keep their air vents closed
- Some of the substances present in smoke can irritate the lining of the nose, throat and lungs, the skin and the eyes. Symptoms may include coughing and wheezing, sore throat, feeling short of breath, runny nose or eyes or chest pain. In general, exposure to smoke is more likely to affect people who have existing breathing problems, lung or heart conditions
- People who are generally fit and well are unlikely to experience long-term health problems from temporary exposure to smoke from a fire
- The very young and very old, smokers, and people with flu or flu-like illnesses, may also be at greater risk after exposure to smoke from fires.
- To minimise your exposure, limit the amount of time you spend outside in the smoke
- People with asthma who may be in the vicinity of the fire should carry their inhaler
If symptoms persist seek medical advice by calling NHS 111 or by contacting your General Practitioner (GP). If a medical consultant is already treating an existing health condition, discuss your concerns and symptoms with them. In the case of an emergency call 999.
Advice for businesses
Businesses are advised to conduct their own risk assessment before opening, to take the smoke in the area, and any other factors, into account.
Working with partners
From the start of the incident, a number of agencies have worked together to manage the ongoing situation. Click on the name of the organisations below to visit their websites.