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23 November 2021

Update regarding the warehouse fire at Rockcliffe Industrial Estate - Tuesday 23 November

Work is ongoing to keep a warehouse at Rockcliffe Industrial Estate under careful review following a recent fire.

Public safety is our top priority and an on-site multi-agency meeting with representatives from, the Environment Agency, Carlisle City Council Environmental Health, Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service and North West Recycling took place on Monday 22 November.

Following assessment of the controlled burn, it was confirmed that the approach to leave the remains of the fire burning on site currently, remains the correct course of action.

However, multi-agency partners are working closely to bring the incident safely to a close. A structural engineer has attended the site to assess the building structure and advised on a plan to dismantle it in a safe and controlled manner allowing safe access to the contents. North West Recycling have cleared an area around the perimeter of the warehouse ahead of laying a temporary road surface, enabling plant equipment to have full access to the site. Specialist hydraulic cutting equipment has also been sourced to support the dismantling of the collapsed steel structure.

On Thursday 25 November, a further multi-agency site meeting will take place to review the situation again and confirm next steps, it is likely at that stage that, tactics will change to retrieve the waste, extinguish and safely dispose of it.

We would like to advise local residents that the change in approach is likely to generate additional smoke in the short term, please be assured that this is anticipated, but required in order to progress with the safe clearance of the site. Subject to a final decision on Thursday, work is likely to take place from Thursday into the weekend and residents are advised to keep all windows and doors closed during this period as a precautionary measure. We are continuing to communicate and engage with Rockcliffe C of E Primary School and the wider community.

This approach will be constantly kept under review and monitored to ensure the safety and wellbeing of the local community and fire crews will maintain a presence in the area over the coming days, carrying out routine safe and well visits to provide information and advice to local residents.

For further information, please visit: www.cumbria.gov.uk/rockcliffefire/

Work is ongoing to keep a warehouse at Rockcliffe Industrial Estate under careful review following a recent fire.