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Waste and recycling in Hong Kong

Third-alarm blaze at Hong Kong recycling plant takes 130 firefighters four hours to put out

No casualties reported as burning plastic generates giant cloud of black smoke in Yuen Long

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 13 September, 2017, 1:00pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 20 September, 2017, 1:19pm

About 130 firefighters took more than four hours to put out a predawn blaze at a recycling plant in Yuen Long on Wednesday.


Emergency crews were called in when the fire broke out at the 17,000 sq ft site at Shan Ha Tsuen on Shan Ha Road at 5.40am. The used plastic stored at the plant went up in flames, spewing out a large cloud of black smoke and lighting up the early morning sky.

The fire was upgraded to a third-alarm blaze at 6.35am. Fires in the city are rated on a scale of one to five according to seriousness.

Four ambulances and 35 fire engines were sent to the scene, according to the Fire Services Department.

When asked why it was upgraded to a third-alarm fire, the department’s acting New Territories West divisional officer Wu Man-to said: “The fire scene covered a large area, and the site stored a large quantity of plastic. The fire was so fierce.”

He said firefighters also had to lay hoses up to 600 metres long to reach the water source.

The crews battled the blaze with four water jets, bringing it under control at 9.35am and finally putting it out at about 10am.

Police said four workers were evacuated from an adjacent recycling plant, and there were no casualties in the incident.

The Fire Services Department is investigating the cause of the blaze.