Investigations underway into east London scrap yard fire

Ten fire appliances and 70 firefighters were called to a major fire at an east London scrap yard on 17 February 2024

The blaze, which broke out in the early hours of the morning, was located at a scrap metal recycling yard in Silvertown, near London City Airport. London Fire Brigade (LFB) dispatched multiple crews from Plaistow, East Ham, Poplar, and Stratford fire stations to tackle the blaze.

On arrival, firefighters found several tonnes of scrap metal “alight” and spent over four hours working to bring the fire under control. In addition to a drone team, crews utilised a 32-metre turntable ladder as a water tower to fight the fire from above.

While there were no reported injuries, warnings were issued to locals in the area regarding the intensity of smoke surrounding the incident. Control officers reported receiving numerous calls from the public about the “sight or smell of the smoke” in other parts of East London and Newham. LFB believed these calls to be “connected” to the Silvertown fire but still urged residents to report any fires taking place elsewhere.

In an update, Kevin Morgan, Station Commander for the LFB said: "The fire has been producing large amounts of smoke. There is still smoke travel in the area so we're asking people who are living and working close by, as well as in parts of east London, to keep their windows and doors shut at this time."

LFB added that a scientific advisor was at the scene monitoring the air quality to “ensure action can be taken if the air quality, as a result of the fire, gets worse”.

By approximately 9:00 am, LFB said the fire at the scrapyard had been brought under control, with crews remaining on the scene into the afternoon. An investigation into the cause of the fire is underway.


(Photograph by the London Fire Brigade)