Published: Mon, July 02, 2018
Global News | By Blake Casey

Winter Hill fire could disrupt radio services

Winter Hill fire could disrupt radio services

"We still have 10 fire engines and the fire engines from Manchester at the scene".

"A major incident has been declared as the fires on Winter Hill and Scout Road near Bolton have merged", Greater Manchester Police said in a statement, referring to an area roughly 12 miles northwest of the city.

Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) tweeted an appeal for donations for the crews: "We are in urgent need of the following at Stalybridge Community Fire Station, SK15 1RF: - Sun cream - Insect repellent - Baseball caps - Pairs of socks, thick and thin".

Firefighters had been making progress with the fires on the western side of the hill, but throughout Saturday morning high winds pushed another huge fire towards the hill from the east.

"We advise members of the public to keep clear of the areas for their own safety", Lancashire fire and rescue service tweeted.

'The incident at Tameside rolls into a second week, while we continue to work with @LancashireFRS in Bolton, ' it added. Keeping windows and doors closed due to the smoke is also advised.

Firefighter Trina Burrow explained: "It is demoralising, you feel like you are fighting a losing battle but you have just got to keep trying".

Crews have been tackling the "aggressive" and "developing" fire on Winter Hill, near Rivington, Lancashire since Thursday afternoon.

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At lunchtime firefighters were ordered to evacuate, with fire chiefs in the command unit at the bottom of the hill deciding it was too risky to keep them working in the diminishing land between the two fires.

Greater Manchester assistant chief fire officer Leon Parkes said: "It continues to be an extremely challenging time for Greater Manchester fire and rescue service and conditions for our crews up on the moors are very hard".

Helicopters have been drafted in to tackle fires in about seven areas.

The crews battling the blaze were not scaled back until towards the end of the day. "I am so proud of our crews and what they are doing".

"Our firefighters are exhausted but optimistic that we continue to make good progress", he said.

John Taylor, press officer for Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service said it "beggars belief" that somebody would start fires when the emergency services were already stretched.

A 21-year-old man from Bolton was on Friday arrested on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life and has been released under investigation.

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