Spate of barbecue blazes for firefighters

Black smoke billows into the air   Picture: Jeff Coates

Fire crews battle blaze in heart of Waterlooville

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FIREFIGHTERS are urging people to take extra care after two fires believed to have been caused by disposable barbecues.

Two fire crews from Chichester were needed to tackle a blaze in a recycling plant in Westhampnett, near Chichester, shortly before 6pm on Monday.

Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus were able to quickly extinguish the fire.

Although, at this stage, the cause of the fire is unknown, recycling staff reported seeing several disposable barbecues discarded in the rubbish.

At about 11.20pm on Monday, firefighters went to Bognor High Street to a small fire on a first-floor balcony.

A section of wooden decking had to be cut away to stop it reigniting.

Carl Halewood, watch commander at Chichester, said: ‘Both these incidents had the potential to be very serious indeed.

‘Each year we are called to extinguish dozens of fires where barbecues have either got out of hand or where coals have been discarded carelessly.’