Bradford Tyre Blaze Halts Trains and Closes Roads and Schools

November 16, 2020 Updated: November 16, 2020

A large fire near railway lines and schools involving thousands of tyres triggered class and road closures and halted train journeys in Bradford, northern England, on Monday.

The blaze reportedly started in the early hours of Monday morning at a former go-karting track about 50 metres from the railway at Bradford Interchange, putting around 8,000 tyres and railway equipment at risk, according to Northern Rail.

Local news footage on social media showed a large blaze sending thick black smoke billowing across the area in and around East Bowling in Bradford.

Bradford tyre Blaze
A fire involving a large quantity of tyres is seen billowing thick black smoke at a location near the railway’s Bradford Interchange in Bradford, Northern England, on Nov. 16, 2020. (West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service)

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS), who attended the fire, wrote on Twitter that, due to the smoke, residents east of the fire in the East Bowling area should keep windows and doors closed.

The fire service also advised the public against travel in the area.

Fire fighters are seen tackling a blaze involving a large quantity of tyres at a location near the railway's Bradford
Fire fighters tackle a blaze involving a large quantity of tyres at a location near the railway’s Bradford Interchange in Bradford, Northern England, on Nov. 16, 2020. (West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service)

Bradford Council, also on Twitter, notified the public of road closures and several school closures while the emergency services were dealing with the fire on Upper Castle Street.

At 3:13 p.m., WYFRS wrote on Twitter that they had contained the fire and were “checking equipment.”

In a 6 p.m. update, the fire service said crews would remain at the site overnight, and road closures were still in place.

‘Major Disruption’

Train operator Northern Rail meanwhile announced “major disruption” on lines between Leeds and Manchester Victoria stations due to “a large fire close to the railway line” that was giving off large amounts of smoke.

Services on the affected lines were either “cancelled, diverted and delayed or replaced by road transport,” causing significant disruption.

Northern Rail said in a later statement that disruption to services would continue into Tuesday.

Fire fighters are seen attending a blaze involving a large quantity of tyres at a location near the railway's Bradford Interchange in Bradford on Nov.16, 2020. (West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service)
Fire fighters are seen with thick smoke from a blaze involving a large quantity of tyres at a location near the railway’s Bradford Interchange in Bradford, Northern England, on Nov. 16, 2020. (West Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service)

WYFRS, which was called to the fire just after 3 a.m., said in a statement that around 100 firefighters with 15 fire engines and two aerial ladder platforms had attended the scene.

The fire service did not report any casualties and stated that “all persons are accounted for.”

WYFRS told The Epoch Times in an email that it would not “speculate on the cause” of the fire.

West Yorkshire Police also declined to comment on the incident at this time.