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UPDATE: Havering and Essex firefighters defeat Little Warley cooking oil blaze after six hours

09:46 20 November 2012

The scene of the blaze in Little Warley (photo: Essex Fire and Rescue)

The scene of the blaze in Little Warley (photo: Essex Fire and Rescue)

Graham S Dean Photography

Four Havering fire crews and two from Brentwood were among the emergency services battling a large cooking oil blaze in Little Warley on Tuesday morning.

The fire raged for much of the morning (photo: Essex Fire and Rescue)The fire raged for much of the morning (photo: Essex Fire and Rescue)

Essex Fire Brigade said 160,000 litres of cooking oil, 30,000 litres of diesel and 30,000 tonnes of paper had been alight at a storage yard in Little Warley Hall Lane.

About 65 firefighters from a total of 15 crews were at the scene, including two Romford crews and one each from Hornchurch and Harold Hill.

The blaze was reported at 5.15am and firefighters took more than six hours to put it out.

Electricity and water companies and the Environment Agency were also at the scene.

The yard was gutted by the fire (photo: Essex Fire and Rescue)The yard was gutted by the fire (photo: Essex Fire and Rescue)

Incident commander Divisional Officer Mark Samuels said: “This is a recycling yard that recycles various types of used oils, hence the intensity of the fire.”

The fire brigade have spent a further two days turning over and damping down the debris to make sure no pockets of heat remained that could reignite. As of Wednesday night, two fire crews were still at the scene.

Police and fire services are carrying out an investigation into the cause of the inferno.

The fire is believed to have started in a storage container owned by a neighbour, where oil collected from businesses in east London is stored before recycling for biofuel.

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