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June 13, 2022

Smurfit Kappa resumes some work at Birmingham plant after fire

There have been no report of casualties caused by the outbreak.

Irish corrugated packaging company Smurfit Kappa has resumed some operations at its packaging plant in Neachells in Birmingham, UK, following a major fire outbreak, the Guardian has reported.

The outbreak occurred on 12 June after a large amount of paper and cardboard bales caught fire at a warehouse in the plant.

West Midlands Fire Service said that the incident destroyed about 8,000t of paper and compressed cardboard.

The fire service was called to the scene on 12 June at 19:40.

On 12 June, West Midlands Fire Service stated: “At the height of the incident, we had more than 30 fire appliances in attendance – including two aerial hydraulic platforms, multiple fire engines, a high volume water pumping unit, and one of our drones.”

Crews from stations across the West Midlands tackled the fire using main jets.

There were no reports of any casualties and the local fire service said that its investigators would aim to identify the causes of the outbreak.

West Midlands Fire Service added: “Excellent progress has been made by crews throughout the night as they continue to work toward bringing this incident to a safe conclusion.

“It’s expected that we will be in attendance in some capacity for at least the next 48 hours.”

Smurfit Kappa is yet to comment on the incident.

The facility in Birmingham is one of two paper mills the company operates in the UK.

The plant produces 500-700t of packaging paper a day, which is later converted into cardboard boxes, as reported by The Guardian.

Earlier this month, Smurfit Kappa invested $23.5m to convert its sheet plant in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, into a fully integrated corrugated plant.

The company has added an advanced corrugator to the plant with the aim to address the fast-growing demand for sustainable packaging in San Antonio, Texas.

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