Fire investigation at SAICA’s Manchester paper mill

An investigation is now underway after a fire broke out at the SAICA paper mill’s adjacent paper store in Manchester

The fire broke out in the recovered paper yard of the Partington paper mill near Trafford, Manchester, which stores 400 tonnes of paper on site for use in the papermaking process.

Around 200 tonnes of recovered paper was damaged in the fire, SAICA has stated, and an investigation into the cause of the fire is being carried out.

The alarm was raised at 16:15 on 23 June, the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service confirmed, with firefighters still on site over 24 hours later, using thermal imaging to identify any hotspots of fire.

The fire service said firefighters used “hose reel jets, monitors, thermal imaging cameras and forklift trucks to navigate their way around the tricky incident ground.” Nearby residents were warned to keep windows and doors shut.

SAICA Paper said: “We are still investigating the exact cause of the fire but it was instantly spotted by state-of-the-art thermal imaging cameras which constantly scan the paper yard looking for areas of unusual heat.

“Production at the factory was halted briefly to allow for all water used during the paper recycling process to be diverted to tackle the fire and non-essential personnel were evacuated.”

The fire service was on site within minutes, with a total of eight appliances attending the scene, according to SAICA. There were no injuries to personnel or any property damage.

SAICA Paper UK is part of the Spanish SAICA Group, which operates paper mills in Spain, France and the UK, producing corrugated papers from recovered paper and cardboard.