UK & World News

  • 31 July 2014, 20:55

Power Station Blaze Causes Structural Damage

Firefighters have been battling a blaze at a coal-fired power station in West Yorkshire.

Emergency services were alerted to the fire at the Ferrybridge C plant shortly before 2pm.

Footage from the scene showed flames and smoke pouring from the third floor of a four-storey building.

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said 15 crews took part in the operation to control the blaze at the power station, which stands beside the busy M62 and A1 roads.

No one was injured in the fire, which has caused damage to the third floor of the building.

A fire spokesman said: "A number of members of the public have called our control room due to the plumes of smoke which can be seen in the surrounding area."

The site, alongside the River Aire, is operated by the energy giant SSE and has had three power stations since 1924. The current one has operated since 1966.

According to the SSE website, Ferrybridge C has two 650ft chimneys and eight 380ft cooling towers - the "largest of their kind in Europe".

A statement issued by SSE said: "At around 2pm today a serious incident occurred at SSE's Ferrybridge C power station in West Yorkshire.

"The company's practised emergency response procedures have been activated.

"West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are in attendance and dealing with the incident with assistance from expert engineers on site. All employees have been accounted for.

"It is too early to give any more information regarding this incident; however, we will issue a further statement when more details become available.

"Our immediate priorities are to deal with the incident and to ensure the safety of staff, contractors and the general public."

The site has undergone major changes as part of the EU Industrial Emissions Directive, which aims to reduce pollution.

A 65MW multi-fuel plant was expected to begin operating on the site next year.

A National Grid spokeswoman said the fire had no impact on electricity supply as the plant was on summer shut down.

She added: "They were not generating on to the grid so it is not going to affect our operations at all."

The fire service has said a structural engineer had been "notified" about the incident.

The nearby M1 and A1 roads were not closed, but firefighters urged drivers to use "caution" near the scene of the blaze.

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