Deptford Fire: ACO Alan Robson comments and latest Public Health Information

ACO Alan Robson with our partners at Alex Smiles Ltd, Deptford

Following the fire at Alex Smiles Ltd, Deptford, Sunderland, Assistant Chief Fire Officer, Alan Robson, commented:

“This continues to be an extremely challenging fire for us to deal with, particularly as there is 30,000 tonnes of waste and the fire is deep seated within the main building. Since Monday we have committed significant resources to fighting the fire – including 54 firefighters, 2 aerial ladder platforms, our High Volume Pump and we’ve also used our drone to provide us with vital intelligence on the fire.

We are continuing to contain and cool the fire and reduce the level of smoke.

We are working with all our partners to bring this incident to safe and successful conclusion for the local community and we are grateful for the support that they have already provided.

Our main priorities are the safety of the community and that of our firefighters.

I would like to take this opportunity to commend the work of our firefighters, and our Control team. Their professionalism has been exceptional in managing this fire.”

Latest advice from Public Health England 18.5.18

Residents in areas affected by Deptford fire are being advised that they should continue to follow public health advice over the coming weekend.

People living and working near the site should limit the time they spend outside and avoid the smoke. Where this is not possible they should reduce physical exertion in areas affected especially if they experience symptoms such as cough or sore throat.

The majority of people are unlikely to experience any health effects following exposure to smoke from a fire, however because any smoke is an irritant, it can make people’s eyes and throat sore.

Smoke is more likely to affect people who have existing breathing problems, lung or heart conditions such as asthma, bronchitis, chronic pulmonary disease or heart disease. It can also affect the very young and the elderly. People with these conditions should avoid strenuous physical activity in areas affected by 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.

As work continues over the weekend to remove debris not affected by the fire from the site there may be from time to time an increased odour which although unpleasant is not a risk to health.