New warning about battery waste after second fire at Wyberton recycling site

Six fire crews attended the scene in Elveden
Six fire crews attended the scene in Elveden
  • Why electrical goods are unsuitable for household rubbish
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A fresh warning not to put batteries or electrical goods in recycling bins has been issued after another fire at Wyberton Household Waste Recycling Centre.

The fire, thought to have happened on Monday, March 12, was spotted early at the waste transfer site in Slippery Gowt Lane, Boston, where a mobile phone battery was found among smouldering rubbish on a pile.

Three weeks earlier, fire crews from Donington and Kirton dealt with a fire at the same site where two burnt-out laptops and their batteries were found in the debris, although the exact cause is still under investigation.

Ian Taylor, of Lincolnshire County Council environmental services, said: “The first fire caused some damage to the building and its fittings, whereas the most recent fire was spotted quickly and the source removed and extinguished. “Almost all the material in the recycling collection is combustible so it is not hard to imagine the consequences if there is an ignition source buried deep within it.

“So far we have been lucky and, of course, we should recycle electrical items and batteries.

“But not in either the recycling or refuse bins because luck can run out.”

This battery is suspected of causing a fire at Wyberton House Waste Recycling Centre on March 12 when staff spotted the danger quickly and removed the source of the incident.''Photo supplied by South Holland District Council.

This battery is suspected of causing a fire at Wyberton House Waste Recycling Centre on March 12 when staff spotted the danger quickly and removed the source of the incident.''Photo supplied by South Holland District Council.

The new warning applies to Spalding Household Waste Recycling Centre in West Marsh Road where any item of electrical equipment that works off either mains power or a battery should not be included in waste collections because of their potential to cause a fire.

Coun Roger Gambba-Jones, of South Holland District Council, said: “Although these fires occurred at a waste transfer station, the dangers from careless battery disposal can just as easily happen in your home.

“If you have batteries to dispose of, please take advantage of the disposal containers all battery retailers must provide in their shops.

“Even very small electrical items containing batteries should always have their power source removed before the item is disposed of, and the batteries recycled, at a shop with a bin.

Almost all the material in the recycling collection is combustible so it is not hard to imagine the consequences if there is an ignition source buried deep within it

Ian Taylor, Environmental Services Team Leader (Waste), Lincolnshire County Council

“Where an electrical item contains batteries that cannot be removed, it should be disposed of at a site such as the household waste recycling centre on West Marsh Road.”

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