Stanton by Dale recycling centre blaze cost Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service and Environment Agency £298,000
A MASSIVE fire at a recycling centre which burned for nearly two months cost an estimated £298,000 of taxpayers' money to tackle, it has been revealed.
The blaze at the Arcwood recycling centre in Lows Lane, Stanton by Dale, which started on September 15, was attended by fire crews continuously for nine days and at its height had 60 firefighters in attendance.
About 8,000 tonnes of wood at the plant went up in smoke, with plumes visible from the M1.
Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service has now revealed that tackling the fire cost £107,000 and the Environment Agency said its role in minimising the blaze's impact on local wildlife cost £191,000.
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Fire crews spent 4,678 man hours at the site costing a total of £88,880, including £1,200 for charges by other fire services attending the blaze.
It also used 118 fire engines, 19 special appliances and the hire of a JCB digger along with driver, all of which totalLed £4,830.
Supplies of fuel for appliances, the vehicle carrying the fuel and welfare provisions for crews on site came to £13,525.
After nine days the fire service operation was scaled down with the last crews leaving on September 25.
The owner of the site, Saint-Gobain PAM, served a notice of eviction on Arcwood Recycling in October and took over running of the site.
The fire was finally extinguished in late October as burning embers were buried on an adjacent site which is covered with a layer of foundry slag and sand.
The majority of the cost, however, was caused by the unexpected impact on local wildlife and the danger posed by the fire to the local environment.
The Environment Agency spent two weeks on site and rescued 100,000 fish in the nearby Erewash Canal as water being used began to de-oxygenate the water.
Thousands were killed but Matt Gable, senior emergency planner from the Environment Agency, said: "Our prompt response to this incident saved about 500,000 fish.
"If the fish had not been saved it could have cost up to £1 million to restock the canal."
Erewash councillor Howard Griffiths said: "The numbers we are talking about are staggering and I believe we should be taking steps to make Arcwood pay."