Fire near Heathrow Airport adds to travel chaos as eight fire engines and 60 firefighters rush to scene

London Fire Brigade was called to the scene on Tachbrook Road in Southall at 11:45am on Tuesday morning

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Around 70 firefighters have rushed to a blaze in Southall, west London.

Large plumes of black smoke from the fire could be seen from the nearby Heathrow Airport.

In a statement, London Fire Brigade said: "Ten fire engines and around 70 firefighters have been called to a fire on Tachbrook Road in Southall.

"Most of a single-storey commercial garage, an adjoining storage area and several cars are alight. A container of oil is also alight.

"Three cylinders were removed from the building before the Brigade arrived and firefighters are cooling them to an ambient temperature as some cylinders can explode when exposed to heat. A 25-metre cordon is in place as a precaution.

"The Brigade’s 999 Control Officers have taken over 40 calls to the blaze."

The incident took place in Southall
The incident took place in Southall
Smoke bellowed from the scene
Smoke bellowed from the scene

Station Commander Graeme Hunter, who is at the scene, said: "The fire is producing heavy smoke, which is visible for miles. We are urging residents in the area to close their windows and doors.

"There is some disruption to traffic, so we encourage people to avoid the area whilst crews continue to work to make the scene safe."

"The Brigade was called at 11:45am. Fire crews from Southall, Hayes, Feltham, Heathrow and surrounding fire stations are at the scene.

"The cause of the fire is not known at this time."

The incident comes as the Easter travel misery continues.

More than 1,000 UK flights have been axed in recent days due to crews being off sick amid a rise in Covid-19 cases.

Some 60 easyJet flights were cancelled on Tuesday, while British Airways dropped at least 98 flights to or from Heathrow on the same day.

Paul Charles, chief executive of travel consultancy The PC Agency, said: “This is a staggering level of flight cancellations caused by a cocktail of not having enough staff in place and Covid-induced staff shortages.

“Airlines are certainly seeing a high level of demand to fly, but are simply unable to cope with that demand due to a lack of resources.

“It’s a nightmare situation for airlines and airports at the moment.”

Video credit- Twitter/@Johindmartin72