Explosion at industrial premises in Forres, Moray

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Three firefighters and four staff from the site were injured

SFRS logo on appliance

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is currently at the scene of an incident at an industrial estate in Forres, Moray.

Control received a call at 8am this morning reporting a fire in a silo at James Jones and Sons sawmill in Greyshop Industrial Estate, Forres.

Three appliances, two from Forres and one from Elgin, were sent to the scene to tackle the fire.

Firefighters in breathing apparatus used one hosereel jet and one main jet. Whilst firefighters were removing the contents of the silo an explosion occurred injuring three firefighters and four members of staff from the site.

Crews remain on scene at the incident and expect to be there for several hours, carrying out firefighting operations.

Police Scotland attended the scene along with the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) and Scottish Ambulance Service. Police confirmed there will be a joint investigation involving themselves, SFRS and the Health and Safety Executive, however said it was too early to speculate on the cause.

The Health and Safety Executive are aware of the incident and an inspector is on site working with the other agencies.

Police Scotland added that a 59-year-old man was flown by air ambulance to Aberdeen Royal Infirmary with serious injuries.

Two firefighters, both aged 47, were taken to Raigmore Hospital in Inverness with burns injuries. A third firefighter who received minor burns did not require further treatment.

A 20-year-old man was also taken to Raigmore for treatment. Two men aged 62 and 24, were also taken to Dr Gray's Hospital in Elgin with burns injuries.

No further details are available at this time.

Update 4.38pm 24 April 2014

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s Director of Service Delivery in the north, Assistant Chief Officer Robert Scott, was at the scene today and said: "Crews were mobilised around 8am this morning to an incident which involved a fire in a silo containing sawdust and wood products.

"On arrival crews sought to put the fire out, however, at some point during that operation an explosion occurred and some of our firefighters and members of staff from the factory were injured as a result of that explosion.

"There will be a full investigation into the circumstances involving ourselves, Police Scotland and the Health and Safety Executive."

Mr Scott added: “I am not fully aware of the extent of the injuries of those involved. Some are being treated in hospital and we wish them all a speedy recovery."

In terms of the ongoing incident itself Mr Scott added: “The situation at the sawmill is under control and we are tackling the fire from above by putting water inside the silo to ensure it is properly extinguished. We are taking all steps, using specialist equipment such as thermal imaging cameras, to identify any remaining hot-spots."