Winter Hill fire update 09/07/2018

Published Monday 9 July 2018 at 15:52

Firefighters say they have made “excellent” progress in bringing the large wildfire on Winter Hill under control.

Around 14 crews from Lancashire and Manchester remain at the scene at peak times, supported by specialist wildfire fighting teams, helicopters and mountain rescue units. Crews from other parts of the country have stood down.

But people are being told to remain away from the area and to observe road closures for their own safety and so that the operation is not hampered.

Chris Kenny, Chief Fire Officer at Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, said:

We’ve made excellent progress in reducing the Winter Hill wildfire and the vital infrastructure and properties in the area have been successfully protected.

We’re operating in an area around 18 sq km in size but we have been able to contain the fire to approximately 8 sq km. We have good control lines in place in the form of trenches that have been dug around the site. Back burning has also been done in places to stop the fire spreading and to protect areas of high risk.

A change in wind direction could alter our plans but at present we are able to reduce the response while still monitoring for flare-ups and maintaining control lines. We continue to douse the moors with water by land and air.

Although the fire is currently under control, the incident remains protracted and demanding, and we expect to be present for several days yet.

Please adhere to road closures which are in place for the public’s safety and to help our crews do their job. People travelling to the scene by vehicle, bike or on foot block access roads for emergency vehicles while flying drones hampers our response and compromises safety.

You can stay up to date with the incident on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

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