EMERGENCY services and other agencies in North Yorkshire say they are continuing to monitor A devastating fire at the Newgen recycling plant several days after it started.

The blaze involving 15,000 tonnes of tyres could be seen from space when it sent plumes of acrid black smoke into the atmosphere after it began on January 16.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue are working with the police , the Met office, environmental health, public health and local authorities to oversee the blaze at Sherburn in Elmet near York, after a decision was taken to allow it to burn out.

Peter Hudson, Group Manager for North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue, said: “At the moment the smoke is dissipating over a wide area and any pollution is being diluted to harmless levels, reducing the impact on the environment.

"This tactic will also reduce the amount of waste that needs to be removed when the fire is out.

“If the fire service were to try and put the fire out, it would require at least a week spent pouring millions of litres of water on to the fire.

"This would carry away contamination to water courses, underground water systems and concentrate high levels of pollution in the surrounding area whilst being difficult to monitor. “