This is why massive plumes of black smoke filled the sky over the borough

Large plumes of thick, black smoke billowed into the sky as a huge pile of tyres was deliberately set alight.

Thursday, 16th May 2019, 9:58 am
The fire produced lots of thick, black smoke
The fire produced lots of thick, black smoke

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service was inundated with calls on Wednesday evening as people across Hindley and Hindley Green reported seeing the plumes.

A pile of 75 tyres had been torched on a dirt track off Maple Avenue, in Hindley Green, causing all the smoke.

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It is thought they had been collected as scrap and set alight to burn the rubber, leaving the alloy to be weighed in as scrap metal.

Two fire engines went to tackle the blaze at 9.20pm and crews spent two hours there working to bring it under control.

The police helicopter also got involved, after seeing the large plumes of smoke.

It was the latest in a series of large tyre fires in Hindley Green in the past six months, with the frequency increasing and firefighters now being called out weekly.

The fire service will now liaise with Wigan Council's environmental health team to tackle the problem.

People are being urged to stop setting the tyres alight and reminded of the impact it has on fire crews.

A fire service spokesman said: "What they do is the tyres are dumped on open land in quite an inaccessible area. They are just set fire to. Up to 75 tyres were there last night.

"It makes a huge plume of black, acrid smoke all the way across Hindley and Hindley Green.

"Not only does it tie us up, but the amount of calls that fire service control gets in relation to it means it also ties them up.

"While we had two fire engines dealing with the incident, there were another two fire engines mobilised into Hindley Green for the same incident seen from another location. People see it and ring the fire brigade, quite rightly so, but in all this meant four fire engines were needed."