Fire erupted at the Mangrove Pond landfill this morning, the latest in a series of blazes there, with huge plumes of billowing black smoke that could be seen from miles away, even in Bridgetown.

The dense clouds of smoke prompted the ministry of health to urge people with respiratory illness to evacuate the area around the garbage dump and affected districts downwind.

A statement from the ministry noted that thick black smoke emanating from the northern section of the landfill was affecting an area stretching from Arch Hall, St. Thomas to Trents, St. James.

Chief Fire Office Errol Maynard told our Kezia Inniss they got the call about 6:00 am and arrived with two teams of firefighters to find the fire raging in the area where vehicle tires are stored, rending their water tenders of little help.

He expected they would be able to get the fire under control with the help of private waste haulers who were supplying additional trucks and tractors to cover the blaze with dirt.

SSA public relations officer Carl Padmore also provided this update.

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