Investigations to start today into cause of Hilsea fire

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The Highfield Campus at the University of Southampton, which is home to the George Thomas Building. Picture: Geograph

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AN INVESTIGATION into a major fire at a recycling centre will start today.

Around 40 firefighters from across the Portsmouth area helped with the blaze at Shawcross Industrial Park, on Ackworth Road in Hilsea.

Smoke from the fire at an industrial unit, in Hilsea. PPP-160731-095803001

Smoke from the fire at an industrial unit, in Hilsea. PPP-160731-095803001

People woke up yesterday morning to thick black smoke coming from the scene.

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service received the call at 8.38am. Yesterday afternoon, three pumps were still working on dampening down the area and making the site safe.

It is unknown what caused the fire, but investigations will start today.

Hilsea resident Jamie Clarke saw the blaze from his window. He said: ‘It was a shock how thick and black the smoke was. The fire must have been huge.’

A spokeswoman from the fire service had earlier advised people to avoid the area. This came as people drove to the scene to have a look, getting in the way of the crews. Police closed the road to stop people getting too close.

Main picture: Tom Moore

Pictire from Portsdown Hill: Claire Ansell