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Alarm caused by bang from fatal blast plant

RESIDENTS in Rotherham were woken in the early hours by the sound of a huge bang caused by steam being released from a recycling plant boiler.

The loud noise came from the Sterecycle plant, on Sheffield Road, Rotherham - but puzzled neighbours phoned the police and fire brigade after hearing what they believed was a massive explosion.

The firm’s chief executive, Tom Shields, said the bang was caused by a ‘normal operation’, and was not a repeat of a disastrous blast last year in which 42-year-old worker Michael Whinfrey died.

Christopher Cass, aged 37, of Hill Top Lane, Richmond Park, said he heard the bang at around 2.45am yesterday.

“I happened to be up, and there was a ginormous explosion and then a big hissing, like steam or gas,” he said.

“It was very loud, it woke a lot of residents up.”

Two fire crews attended the scene from Darnall station in Sheffield, but recorded the incident as a false alarm.

In a statement, Mr Shields said: “The release was caused by the automatic operation of the steam control system on one of Sterecycle’s boilers to release excess steam, and there was no cause for alarm. 

“Sterecycle apologises for the nuisance caused to its neighbours and will take steps to prevent such noises in future.”

 
 
 

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