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Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service

Headquarters

146 Bolton Road

Swinton, Manchester

M27 8US


Tel: 0161 736 5866

For a FREE Safe and Well visit please call:

0800 555 815

Borough: Oldham

Incident Date: 15 December 2016

Mill Fire - Oldham - December 15, 2016

 

 

To view photographs from this incident please visit our Flickr page here.

UPDATE 3.15pm (Thursday, December 22)

TWO fire engines are in Cardwell Street today, with this level of crew set to stay at the site until the fire is completely out.

Firefighters are digging out waste material and damping down at the incident - more than a week after it began.

There is some smoke in the area and local residents are reminded to follow guidance issued by Public Health England.

Public Health England guidance:

  • Overnight please keep your doors and windows closed as smoke may increase overnight.
  • During the day, if smoke is visible outside, please stay indoors and keep windows and doors closed.
  • During the day if smoke is not visible outside, please ventilate your house.
  • If you have any concerns about the smoke’s impact on your health please call your GP surgery for advice, following any instructions for out of hours services, or contact the NHS 111 service (which is free from both landlines and mobiles and open 24/7).
  • People with asthma and other respiratory conditions may be particularly susceptible to the smoke and should carry and use their medication (such as inhalers) as usual.

Updates will be provided as and when available.

 

UPDATE 3.30pm (Wednesday, December 21)

TODAY firefighters have been tackling the fire using an aerial appliance, to allow water to be put onto remaining hot-spots and smoke from above while demolition of the building continues.

There is still some smoke coming from the site and residents in the immediate area asked to keep windows and doors closed when possible, and follow guidance issued by Public Health England.

Public Health England guidance:

  • Overnight please keep your doors and windows closed as smoke may increase overnight.
  • During the day, if smoke is visible outside, please stay indoors and keep windows and doors closed.
  • During the day if smoke is not visible outside, please ventilate your house.
  • If you have any concerns about the smoke’s impact on your health please call your GP surgery for advice, following any instructions for out of hours services, or contact the NHS 111 service (which is free from both landlines and mobiles and open 24/7).
  • People with asthma and other respiratory conditions may be particularly susceptible to the smoke and should carry and use their medication (such as inhalers) as usual.

Updates will be provided as and when available.


UPDATE 4pm (Tuesday, December 20)

FIREFIGHTERS remain at the site of the Maple Mill incident tackling pockets of fire while the building is being demolished.

Today, two aerial appliances and support engines have been at the incident, and this is expected to reduce to two engines through the night.

We continue to ask local residents to keep windows and doors closed while smoke is present, with residents no longer affected by smoke being advised to open windows and ventilate their homes.

Updates will be provided as and when available.

 

UPDATE 10.30am (Monday, December 19)

FIREFIGHTERS continue to tackle pockets of fire at Maple Mill - more than 100 hours after a blaze broke out on Thursday, December 15.

Two aerial appliances and support engines remain on site, working alongside demolition workers who are dismantling the building.

Local residents are asked to continue to keep windows and doors closed while smoke is present whenever possible.

Updates will be provided as and when available.

 

UPDATE 9.30am (Sunday, December 18)

DEMOLITION workers continue to dismantle Maple Mill, after a huge fire broke out on Thursday morning.

Firefighters remain at the Cardwell Street incident with crew members using aerial appliances to put water on pockets of fire from above, and keep smoke to a minimum while demolition takes place.

The cause of the fire has not yet been confirmed.

 

UPDATE 10pm (Saturday, December 17)

FIREFIGHTERS remain on the scene of the Maple Mill fire in Oldham, some 50 hours after the incident started on Thursday morning. It is envisaged that they will be on the scene for some time.

Aerial appliances are still at the scene tackling the deep-seated fire. There continues to be pockets of heat throughout the ruins. Later today, the air unit will again go into the sky over the scene to try and see where there are hot areas and fire still ongoing.

Access continues to be a challenge for fire crew, with large parts of the building remaining unsafe.  The demolition company who have been on the scene since yesterday, have re-started their work at daybreak, taking down a further wall to try and give firefighters better access.

Group Manager Paul Starling said: “One of the challenges we face at the moment is that when the building is demolished, there is nowhere for the rubble to go. This causes small hot spots to be hidden under debris which can cause a long and protracted incident. Firefighters will be at the scene for the rest of the weekend and possibly even into next week.”

Local residents who were evacuated from their homes in the early hours of Thursday morning have now all returned. However, there is still smoke in the area so fire crews are still urging people to keep doors and windows closed.

Fire investigation are working closely with Greater Manchester Police on a joint investigation to ascertain the cause of the fire. 

 

UPDATE 2.15pm (Friday, December 16)

DEMOLITION of Maple Mill has started after a fire broke out in early hours of yesterday morning (Thursday, December 15, 2016).

Around 40 firefighters continue to tackle pockets of fire inside the mill, using aerial appliances to put water on the fire from above.

Residents from around 20 properties in Cardwell Street remain unable to return home due to the unsafe structure of the building.

Group Manager Jon Aspinall, who is currently in charge of the incident, said: "Firefighters continue to work hard tackling the fire and our priority is getting people back into their homes as soon as we can.

"Later into the demolition process we will know more about the structure of the building and about timescales for residents to return home."

The Honeywell Centre in Hadfield Crescent remains open for residents and those who have concerns can contact First Choice Homes on 0161 393 7117.

The whole demolition process could take around three days.

 

UPDATE 10.15am (Friday, December 16)

FIREFIGHTERS have been at Maple Mill in Oldham for nearly 30 hours tackling the blaze. Over the last couple of hours, the night crew are being relieved by the daytime shift. Around 45 firefighters are still on the scene and many will continue to be there for the day.

First thing this morning, a multi-agency meeting took place with Greater Manchester Police, North West Ambulance Service, Oldham Council, Electricity North West and the demolition company. Officers from GMFRS and partners planned the tactical approach to tackling the fire for the next few hours.

The cordon is still in place and people are asked to avoid the area if at all possible.  Although, it is hoped that the remaining residents who are still away from their homes, will be able to return later today. More information on this will be available when we have it.

Further updates will be available through the morning, please keep watching our twitter feed @manchesterfire

 

UPDATE 6.30am (Friday, December 16)

NEARLY 50 firefighters remain at the Maple Mill fire in Oldham, where they have been working tirelessly through the night.

The burning building has posed Officers with a number of significant hazards and remains unsafe. For the safety of our firefighters, they are still extinguishing the blaze from outside of the mill.

The demolition machinery which is due this morning, will look at pulling down parts of the building to reduce this risk.  

Group Manager Ben Levy who is currently managing the incident says: “Whilst smoke levels are starting to reduce from the amounts we saw yesterday, there is still significant smoke in the area, we continue to ask people to keep their doors and windows closed.

“There is still likely to be congestion on the road, as we have huge amounts of hose reel lining the streets, pumping water to the fire. We have put Officers in place to manage the traffic around the area to try and help people and local businesses get on with their day where possible.

"However, having people come to watch the demolition process wouldn’t be helpful to Crews – and so if your intention is to come to the area for this reason - we urge you to stay away.

“Firefighters have worked relentlessly through the night, with determination and persistence.  There will be a changeover with the day crew shortly, giving the firefighters at the scene a well-deserved rest.”

Further updates will be available through the morning, please keep watching our twitter feed @manchesterfire

 

UPDATE 11.15pm 

FIREFIGHTERS from across Greater Manchester are still fighting the blaze at Maple Mill in Oldham, some 18 hours after they were called to the scene just after 4am this morning.

A demolition company have now been at the scene and made safe one side of the building, so that firefighters can gain further access into the mill to tackle the smaller pockets of fire which continue to rage.

Over 100 residents from the immediate area were evacuated from their homes first thing this morning and many have been unable to return since because of the dangers in the immediate area and the instability of the building structure on fire.

Group Manager Dean Nankivell, who is in charge of the incident said: “Our priority for the last couple of hours is making the area safe for local residents to return to their homes.

"In part this has been achieved, with many residents returning home this evening. For a few houses, this hasn't been possible so these residents have been offered alternative accommodation for the night.

"We continue to urge people to keep their windows and doors closed – as there is still heavy smoke in the area.  Firefighters have been doing an amazing job – working tirelessly to keep the fire under control and will continue to do so throughout the night.”

This is still a major incident, with nine GMFRS fire engines and three aerial platforms at the mill, but the incident is being scaled down now that the fire is under control.

Greater Manchester Police and North West Ambulance Service, along with other partners continue to be on the scene and the demolition company will return during daylight hours to continue with their task, along with the building control team from Oldham Council.

It is envisaged that GMFRS will be there all night and tomorrow.

 

UPDATED 4.25pm

 

OVER 70 firefighters are still tackling the blaze at Maple Mill, 11 hours after it began in the early hours of this morning.

 

Crew are fighting the fire from the outside of the mill, following on from a serious collapse of part of the building earlier today.

 

GMFRS is working with building control officers and demolition contractors to assess the safety and demolish parts of the building.

 

Area Manager Tony Hunter, is currently in charge of the fire, said: “Our number one priority at the moment is to get local residents who have been evacuated back into their homes.

 

“There is still a mass of smoke across the area which is being monitored, we are advising everyone to stay indoors with their windows and doors closed.

 

“There is a small chance that people may have been sleeping inside this building when the fire started, but the fire has been too intense for crew to search the property safely.

 

“Once the remains of the building have been made safe, we will be in the position to investigate further.”

 

Around 28 fire service vehicles including fire engines and special appliances are still at the scene tackling the blaze.  

 

 

UPDATED 1.12am

 

RESIDENTS in areas affected by the smoke from the Maple Mill Fire should stay indoors, keep their doors and windows closed, and tune in to the local radio station for advice and information.

Motorists who have to travel through the smoke should keep windows closed, turn off air conditioning and keep their air vents closed.

GMFRS is on-site dealing with the fire and the other agencies involved will continue to monitor the situation and issue advice to the public, businesses and organisations affected as necessary – follow @manchesterfire @oldhamcouncil and @PHE_NorthWest

It’s important that local residents understand that the risks to their health are low, however because any smoke is an irritant, it can make people’s eyes and throat sore.

People with asthma and other respiratory conditions may be particularly susceptible to the smoke and should carry and use their medication (such as inhalers) as usual.

The general advice therefore remains that if possible people should try to remain out of the smoke. If you have any concerns about the smoke’s impact on your health please call your GP surgery for advice, following any instructions for out of hours services, or contact the NHS 111 service (which is free from both landlines and mobiles and open 24/7).

 

UPDATED 11.28am 


FIREFIGHTERS continue to work hard to extinguish the fire at Maple Mill.

There is been no change in the number of fire service appliances at the scene, since the update earlier today.

Parts of the building remains unstable, so firefighters are tackling the blaze from outside of the building.

Firefighters have worked hard to protect surrounding buildings, including a sub station and continue to work with partners including Greater Manchester Police, North West Ambulance Service and Oldham Council. 

Residents in areas affected by the smoke should stay indoors, keep their doors and windows closed, and tune in to the local radio station for advice and information. 

Motorists who have to travel through the smoke should keep windows closed, turn off air conditioning and keep their air vents closed. 

For live updates on this incident please follow @manchesterfire on Twitter and Instagram or visit www.manchesterfire.gov.uk

Message from Public Health England:

The fire and rescue service is on-site dealing with the fire and the other agencies involved will continue to monitor the situation and issue advice to the public, businesses and organisations affected as necessary. 

It’s important that local residents understand that the risks to their health are low, however, because any smoke is an irritant, it can make people’s eyes and throat sore. 

People with asthma and other respiratory conditions may be particularly susceptible to the smoke and should carry and use their medication (such as inhalers) as usual.

The general advice therefore remains that if possible people should try to remain out of the smoke.

If you have any concerns about the smoke’s impact on your health please call your GP surgery for advice, following any instructions for out of hours services, or contact the NHS 111 service (which is free from both landlines and mobiles and open 24/7). 

 

UPDATED 9.47am

 

RESIDENTS in the Fitton Hill area of Oldham are being asked to keep doors and windows closed while firefighters tackle a major blaze at Maple Mill on Cardwell Street.

Around 100 homes have been evacuated and Oldham Council has opened a rest centre for residents affected at the Honeywell Centre in Hadfield Crescent.

Shortly after 4am this morning, December 15, 2016, 10 fire engines along with support vehicles including a command support unit, high volume pump and hose layer were called to the incident.

Around 80 firefighters and officers are at the scene tackling the fire which involves a four-storey industrial building.

Parts of the structure have collapsed and the whole building is engulfed by the fire. Firefighters are attacking the fire with jets, pumping water from nearby open water sources and are attacking the fire from the outside of the building.

Area Manager Warren Pickstone said: “Crews are working incredibly hard to tackle this fire, when we arrived we were met with a serious fire on the top floor of the mill.

“We are working hard with our colleagues at the police to protect surrounding properties, about 100 properties in the immediate area have been evacuated.

 “Tyres are also involved in the fire so it’s emitting a thick acrid smoke, we are asking nearby residents to please keep their windows and doors closed as the smoke plume travels across Oldham.”

For live updates on this incident please follow @manchesterfire on Twitter and Instagram or visit www.manchesterfire.gov.uk

Last update: 22/12/2016 15:26:07
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