Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

Hadleigh: Tanker blaze is being treated as suspicious

PUBLISHED: 12:34 17 November 2012 | UPDATED: 13:41 17 November 2012

The scene of the blaze in Hadleigh on Saturday morning

The scene of the blaze in Hadleigh on Saturday morning

Archant

A BLAZE which engulfed three fuel tankers and threatened to ignite 50,000 litres of fuel, is being treated as suspicious.

This morning a team from Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service were beginning to examine the still smoking wreckage at the UKAY Fuel Limited storage depot on Lady Lane Industrial Estate in Hadleigh.

Police have also now launched an inquiry to trace who may have started the blaze.

All three tankers, two of which contained high levels of kerosene and oil gas, were completely destroyed by the blaze which sent columns of fire 100ft into the air.

Managers of the depot were said to be in a meeting with fire officers and were unavailable for comment.

More than fifty firefighters from across Suffolk were called to the depot at 6.40pm yesterday.

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Mark Hardingham said crews battled for 90 minutes to prevent flames spreading from the burning vehicles to an underground tank of fuel.

Police set up a 300m cordon and warned those living near the site, to close their windows and stay inside.

Louis Callaway-Rush, 22, was at a petrol station in Lady Lane when a woman rushed in and broke the news.

“I went round the corner and then I heard two almighty bangs as two of the tanks went up.

“It is the biggest fire I’ve ever seen up close.

“The flames were probably 100ft high.”

The A1071 was later closed to all traffic as emergency services set up a command post to deal with the situation.

The road was reopened about at 10.50pm.

Dep Chf Hardingham said the first of the tankers had been empty but the second vehicle contained 12,000 litres of kerosene.

The third tanker contained 15,000 litres of gas oil and 2,000 litres of road fuel.

The tankers were parked a short distance away from an underground storage unit that held about 50,000 litres of fuel.

Firefighters sprayed the tank, which was said to already be hot, with cold water to prevent the gas oil from igniting.

Dep Chf Hardingham, who praised the efforts of his crews and other emergency services at the scene, said: “Our main concern was about the storage tank. If the fire had spread it would have been much more significant for the premises and the surrounding businesses.”

All of the tankers were extinguished by about 9pm.

Police are appealing for witnesses to come forward by calling 101

For a video and gallery of the blaze click on the link at the top right corner of this story.

Related articles

3 comments

  • I reckon the proximate cause was fire

    Report this comment

    the opinion man

    Saturday, November 17, 2012

  • The two loud explosions heard and the resulting fire could indicate that a very hot space debris impact may have been the possible cause and this should be investigated for by the fire chief. For more interest put JOHN HALL SPACE DEBRIS in your Google slot.

    Report this comment

    RAISD

    Saturday, November 17, 2012

  • Fortunately, as it was in Hadleigh, only 37p worth of damage was done.

    Report this comment

    MrCommonSense

    Saturday, November 17, 2012

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Damage was caused to the windows and wing mirrors of several vehicles in Felixstowe over the weekend.

A decomposing whale carcass did little to deter visitors from the Suffolk seaside today- though many onlookers said its removal was already overdue.

Visitors will be able to learn more about Ipswich Hospital’s vision for the future and see some of its innovative equipment in action during an open day.

Months of major roadworks on a key route into Bury St Edmunds are set to start, as a double roundabout is removed under £2.8million plans to improve roads across the town.

An animal lover who travelled hundreds of miles from her Suffolk home to give a new life to an unwanted breeding dog has launched an appeal to help pay for veterinary care.

Hollywood film star Russell Crowe referred to singer Ed Sheeran staying at his farm with fiancée Cherry Seaborn - but will the pair marry in Suffolk?

Easton and Otley College’s ‘Big Day Out’ returned after a three year hiatus yesterday - attracting thousands to the Otley campus.

An 18-year-old Ipswich man has been arrested on suspicion of assaulting a teenage boy during a fight in the town.

No fees will be incurred by owners of beach huts if the council moves them from a stretch of eroded seafront in Felixstowe.

A Suffolk social worker has been struck off after having an inappropriate relationship with a service user while employed by Suffolk County Council.

Most read

Most commented

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24