Crews praised for reducing impact of fire

Mon 10 Aug, 2015

Firefighters have been praised for minimising the impact caused by a fire involving a tractor, trailer and 10 tonnes of baled hay near Saunderton yesterday (Sunday 9 August).

Crews from Aylesbury and High Wycombe were called to the incident in Lee Road shortly before noon.

Station Commander Dean Elliott, who also attended, said: “Firefighters were faced with a trailer well alight and the risk of large amounts of smoke entering two adjacent properties. 

“They also had to consider overhead power lines, the environmental impact on the sewer system and the potential for extreme damage to the highway. These types of incident require the contents to be pulled apart and encouraged to burn off as they cannot be extinguished once they have caught fire.”

Incident Commander Jon Franklin from High Wycombe Fire Station and his assistant Watch Commander Jamie Humphrey from Aylesbury Fire Station liaised with the farmer and devised a plan to move the vehicle about 400 metres away from the immediate danger and into an adjoining field (pictured above) which had already been harvested. 

Dean continued: “The trailer and tractor were already damaged, but additional protection measures were put in place to prevent the fire spreading until the trailer was then safely placed in the field. 

“The crew then spent four hours turning over the hay until it had safely burnt off. This tactical decision kept the damage to the highway to a minimum when it potentially could have cost in the region of tens of thousands of pounds to repair the surface. 

“The adjacent properties were saved from prolonged smoke damage, the environmental impact on the surface water drains was averted, hedgerow and trees were protected from terminal damage and the overhead power lines did not become exposed to heat or flames.”