26 August 2019

Fire at Hollingdean waste transfer station

Update: Tuesday 27 August

We’d like to reassure residents that investigations are continuing following the fire at the waste transfer station in Hollingdean this weekend.

The council contracts Veolia to manage the disposal of household waste in the city. We’re currently focused on limiting disruption to residents following the fire by making sure collections take place as planned and alternative facilities are being used to dispose of the waste.

The fire involved household waste at Veolia’s waste transfer station at Hollingdean. The materials were standard waste from streets and seafront rubbish bins. The council followed the guidance from East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service at all times during the incident and the fire service’s advice was shared to provide updates for residents. We also sought advice from Public Health England (PHE) and their team agreed the Fire Service approach with regards to public health safety.

The council and Veolia will be working together to look at what happened and whether any action needs to be taken.

For anyone concerned about the effects of smoke, information is available from PHE, details below.

Public Health England advice:

  • Some of the substances present in smoke can irritate the lining of the nose, eyes, throat and lungs, and may cause symptoms such as coughing, feeling short of breath, chest pain, runny nose and eyes. In most cases these are short term.  
  • If symptoms persist, seek medical advice call NHS 111. In the case of an emergency call 999.  
  • If you already seeing a health care practitioner about a long term health condition, such as lung or heart conditions, discuss your concerns with them. 

Monday 26 August

At just before 11pm last night a fire broke out at the waste transfer station, next to the materials recovery facility (MRF), in Hollingdean.

East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service attended promptly with six fire engines and an aerial ladder platform and quickly and the fire was put out.

No-one was injured and fire officers left the scene mid-morning after damping down. They will return later this afternoon to reinspect the site.

Residents can now open their windows and doors as the smoke has dispersed. The fire service advice was to keep them closed while the fire was sending smoke into the air.

Rubbish collections

Refuse and recycling collections are continuing as usual this Bank Holiday Monday. However waste and recycling is being deposited at other sites such as Hove and Newhaven, so collections will take longer to complete.

Officers are working with operator Veolia on contingency plans for the dealing with recycling as the facility's electrical and odour controls are currently out of action.