London Fire Brigade

Major Canning Town blaze caused by cigarette

12 April 2012

One week after a massive blaze in east London that caused power cuts across the capital, the London Fire Brigade has revealed that the most likely cause of the fire was a cigarette.

The fire caused severe damage to a large part of an industrial estate on Bidder Street in Canning Town and completely gutted a recycling and storage yard, a workshop, a warehouse, part of a scrap yard and a car and van.

Wayne Brown, the Brigade’s Borough Commander for Newham, said:

“Our fire investigators carried out a painstaking investigation and they now believe that this huge blaze was caused by the careless disposal of a cigarette which set fire to the pallet recycling yard and then spread to other parts of the site.

“Countless fires in the capital are caused by cigarettes each year, many of which could be easily avoided if smokers took better care. This fire is a reminder of how dangerous cigarettes are and how severe the outcome can be. One simple mistake with a cigarette left thousands of homes across London without any power and caused huge damage to the site.

“If you do smoke, please make sure your cigarette is completely out once you’ve finished with it, don’t flick it away when it’s still lit as the consequences can be disastrous.”

Over 60 firefighters and 12 fire engines from across London were at the scene to tackle the blaze.  The Brigade was called at 1500 on Thursday  and the incident was declared over at 2027.