Update: Firefighting concluded at Smarden blaze
LATEST UPDATE: 9.30am 25/07/18
Firefighting has concluded at the mattress recycling facility fire in Smarden Business Estate. Crews left the scene just after 4pm yesterday (24 July) and crew carried out further visits overnight and this morning to check for remaining hotspots. The cause of the fire is not yet known. Fire investigation teams will be attending the scene today.
UPDATE: 11:30AM 24/07/2018
Firefighters are continuing to deal with a fire at a mattress recycling facility in Smarden. A watching brief was carried over night. Three fire engines are currently in attendance, along with a bulk water carrier and a Kent Fire and Rescue Service's technical rescue crew. Fire crews are working with an on site demolition company and a mechanical excavator is being used to access the building. The burning contents is being brought out of the building, so that fire crews can extinguish it, using hose reel jets and water supplied by the bulk water carrier and a hydrant. Fire crews are working in rotation in arduous conditions due to the heat, and are being provided with a ready supply of water to keep them hydrated. Crews are likely to be on the scene for some time, until the fire inside the building is fully extinguished.
UPDATE: 5PM 23/07/18
Firefighters have made good progress throughout the day tackling the fire at the recycling facility in Smarden. With the support of the Technical Rescue team, crews have been able to extinguish some of the deep seated fires within the mattresses in one of the storage units, through dragging them out and extinguishing the hot spots. Crews used the Bobcat and worked with a local scaffolding company excavator. Operations have been scaled back this evening with crews performing a watching brief overnight. Firefighting operations will begin again in the morning carrying out a similar approach in gaining access to the hot spots and extinguishing them.
UPDATE: 7:45AM 23/7/18
Firefighting continues at the recycling facility in Smarden this morning. Although the number of fire engines has been scaled back to three overnight, crews have been working hard to get on top of the incident. Two large storage units have been completely destroyed in the fire, which are now structurally unsafe. The framework of the units will need to be inspected before crews can enter to continue the work within the footprint of the structures. Crews are using rakes to pull apart the piles of mattresses, being stored outside, due to the deep seated fire at the heart of the piles. Firefighters are using hose reels to then tackle the fire within the mattresses. The advice to residents living nearby regarding closing their windows and doors is now no longer required, however may be implemented again later depending on the levels of smoke and the type of tactics used to continue the firefighting.
UPDATE: 6PM 22/07/18
Firefighting continues at the recycling facility on the Smarden Business Estate this evening. A height vehicle has been sent to the incident to support the firefighting. Crews have been working closely with colleagues at the Environment Agency to make sure everything is done to minimise any impact on the local area and community. Firefighters are working hard to extinguish the blaze. Residents are still being asked to keep windows and doors closed due to large volume of smoke, as a precaution.
UPDATE: 3PM 22/07/18
Firefighters are still at the scene of a large fire at a recycling storage plant at Smarden Business Estate involving matresses, two large buildings and around five shipping containers. Residents are still being asked to keep windows and doors closed. Crews are working in extremely tough conditions and high temperatures. Kent Police have closed the road close to the site and motorists are advised to take alternative routes. Kent Fire and Rescue Service Volunteer Response Team have been called in to support with welfare during the incident. More to come.
UPDATE: 1PM 22/07/18
Kent Fire and Rescue Service is at the scene of a large fire on Smarden Business Estate. Crews arrived to find two large buildings, each measuring 20 metres by 20 metres, well alight. Residents living near the incident have been asked to close their windows and doors due to the large volume of smoke in the area. Six fire engines and a bulk water carrier have been sent to the scene. It's believed the buildings are used as storage containers. There are no reported injuries at this stage. Crews are using foam, main jets, hose reel jets and breathing apparatus to tackle the fire. The cause isn't known as this stage.
Special and Support vehicles
- Height vehicle
- Command support unit
- Bulk water carrier