VIDEO & GALLERY: Smoke pours across Fenland as series of stack fires burn near A142

SMOKE continues to pour across Fenland this morning as a series of stack fires burn near the A142.

Crews are tackling more than 66,000 tonnes of stack fire in the Mepal and Witcham Toll areas, thought to have been started by arsonists.

The smoke from the fires, which are expected to burn for several days, can be seen from almost 30 miles away.

About 32,000 bales of straw (16,000 tonnes) are alight in Mepal while roughly 100,000 bales (50,000 tonnes) were torched in Witcham Toll.

The exact number of stacks on fire is difficult to tell as they are very close together. The straw was destined for the Elean Power Station at Sutton, near Ely. which is the largest straw burning power station in the world.

Chris Parker, Station Manager for Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service, who believes the fires are “suspicious”, said: “These are very large fires and as with all smoke, it does have a degree of toxicity.

“We would advise all residents and drivers affected to keep windows and doors closed and to contact NHS Direct is they experience any adverse affects on 0845 4567.

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“At the moment, the smoke is blowing across fields towards Witchford, but if the wind direction changes we will issue further advice.

“Residents and drivers are advised to follow the latest information from this incident, via local radio stations, this website and our social media pages.”

Firefighters do not believe the blazes are in danger of spreading to homes and other buildings.

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