Newspaper for Crossmaglen, South Armagh, Newry and Down.

Major fire destroys wood recycling plant

More than 50 firefighters spent most of Saturday tackling a major fire at a wood recycling plant in Newry.

Firefighters were alerted to the blaze at Urban Forest Ltd on Derryboy Road in the Carnbane Industrial Estate just after 6:30am on Saturday morning.   According to Group Commander Edward Carroll, two fire appliances from Newry were immediately deployed to the scene of the blaze but on arrival firefighters were confronted with “a well developed fire” which called for additional resources from Newry and the surrounding area.

“At the height of the blaze five pump appliances and a high volume pump from Armagh were in operation as well as  two aerial appliances from Portadown and Belfast,”  the Group Commander confirmed.

“In the early stages there was a considerable risk of the fire spreading but due to the prompt actions of the crews we were able to contain the fire to the building of origin,” Mr Carroll said, adding that he understood the wood recycling business was still operational as the surrounding site remained undamaged by the blaze.

Urban Forest Ltd specialises in reprocessing discarded wood stocks to produce a range of wood products for the animal and bird bedding markets.

Firefighters worked throughout the day to extinguish the fire which had completely gutted the huge industrial premises and as evening came the building was still smouldering from the intensity of the blaze that tore through it more than twelve hours before.

The herculean efforts of the firefighters attending the major incident received widespread recognition with Newry and Armagh MP Mickey Brady praising their “prompt and professional action” which had ensured the containment of the blaze.

No-one was injured in the fire and the cause of the blaze is as yet unknown.