AN out-of-control burn-off started a huge blaze at a recycling yard in Delacombe yesterday.
CFA crews were called to the blaze about 12.20pm after receiving a number of reports of a large fire in Elizabeth Street, off Sutton Street.
About 100 tyres in a recycling yard in Elizabeth Street had caught fire, ignited by a three-day-old burn-off that had flared in strong winds.
There were six gas cylinders involved in the fire, as well as the threat of asbestos.
Thick black smoke billowed from the fire and could be seen across Ballarat as fire crews rushed to control the blaze.
Ballarat City Fire Brigade senior station officer Shane Phillips said crews had difficulty initially controlling the blaze, due mostly to its inaccessibility.
“We were climbing over piles of demolition waste to fight the fire at the start,” he said.
“There was no threat to the neighbouring (Bendix Brakes) factory, so we didn’t feel there was any need to evacuate workers.”
Seven crews from Ballarat City, Wendouree, Sebastopol, Haddon and Smythesdale worked to control the blaze, while police also blocked off Elizabeth Street to traffic.
It was under control within 30 minutes, but crews remained on scene for about two hours to ensure it did not re-ignite.
Mr Phillips reminded people to ensure any fires they lit were completely extinguished, as strong winds could easily cause them to flare up.
He said people should call triple-0 in an emergency, rather than call the fire station.
“We had a number of calls at the station when we were trying to get out the door,” said Mr Phillips.
A number of readers sent through photos of the fire via The Courier iPhone app, which almost 8000 people have downloaded. To download the app visit the Apple store.