As it happenedended1658329845

UK weather news – live: Heatwave fires ‘like the Blitz’ as dozens of homes destroyed

Around 19 houses were destroyed after fires tore through rows of houses in Wennington

Liam James,Stuti Mishra,Emily Atkinson
Wednesday 20 July 2022 16:10 BST
UK heatwave: Dartford wildfire reaches motorway as temperatures hit record high

The scene at a smouldering village on the outskirts of London, which saw some of yesterday’s most devastating fires, has been described by a resident as being “like the Blitz”.

Around 19 houses were destroyed after fires first seen in back gardens rapidly tore through rows of houses in Wennington.

Resident Tim Stock, who lost his family home of 60 years in the blaze, told BBC Radio 5 Live: “It was like a warzone. Down the actual main road, all the windows had exploded out, all the rooves had caved, it was like a scene from the Blitz really.”

It comes as some 41 properties including homes and warehouses have been destroyed in the capital as Tuesday’s heatwave saw the busiest day for London’s Fire Brigade (LFB) since the Second World War, according to Sadiq Khan.

Operating in 40C heat on Tuesday, firefighters took an estimated 2,600 emergency calls and responded to over 1,000 fire calls, the London mayor told Sky News.

Of the 16 firefighters who suffered “heat-related injuries”, two were hospitalised, LFB assistant commissioner Jonathan Smith said. Both have since been released.


Police smash car windows to free dogs trapped inside in record heatwave

Police were forced to smash the window of a £25,000 electric car to save a dog trapped inside during the record heatwave.

Officers intervened after a member of the public spotted the trapped pet on Oxendon Street, in central London, on Monday, as temperatures soared past 37C.

The owner of another dog is facing animal cruelty charges after police smashed a car window to rescue it fin Barnet.

John Thompson, 35, spotted the dog in Oxendon Street, Westminister, along with other bystanders in the early evening and caught the moment police arrived to free the animal on camera.

He said: “I was just immediately scared for the dog and thought ‘Come on, it’s the hottest day of the year’.”

Police smash car windows to free dogs trapped inside in record heatwave

One owner reported for animal cruelty after pet found left in car outside RAF museum

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 17:11

More pictures emerge of a fire in East London

More pictures have emerged of a significant fire in East London. Several buildings have burnt down in Wennington with the fire spreading across the town’s fields. It comes after a huge grass fire broke out in Dartford, Kent.

Kent Fire and Rescue Service said twelve fire engines and a height vehicle had been sent to the scene near fire near Durrell Dene, in Joyce Green.

Crews are working to extinguish the roaring flames amid the hottest temperatures in Britain’s records. Multiple places including Heathrow airport and Kew Gardens have recorded temperatures of 40C.

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 17:35

Met Office issue warning over thunderstorms

The Met Office have issued a warning about imminent thunderstorms across parts of northern England and southern Scotland.

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 17:48

Leicestershire fire service declares major incident

Leicestershire Fire and Rescue Service has declared a major incident due to the high number of call-outs it is receiving.

The brigade said: “We have declared a major incident due to high demand across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland We will not be attending Automatic Fire alarms. Please only call us if it’s an emergency.”

The service is the second today to declare a major incident, following the London Fire Brigade, which is battling blazes across the capital.

Chris Baynes19 July 2022 17:51

Buckinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service has said it is dealing with two major fires, one in Walnut Tree in Milton Keynes and the second in Whitehouse Lane in Wooburn More.

Chris Baynes19 July 2022 17:59

New maximum temperature set in Scotland

The Met Office have said that a new maximum temperature has been set in Scotland.

Charterhall in the Scottish Borders provisionally set a new maximum temperature record for Scotland on Tuesday, with the temperature rising to 34.8C earlier this afternoon.

This exceeds the previous record of 32.9C recorded in Greycrook on 9th August 2003.

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 18:16

Leicester Fire and Rescue Service declares major incident

Leicester Fire and Rescue Service has joined the London Fire Brigade in declaring a major incident as fires rage across the UK due to the heatwave.

Jonathan Smith, assistant commissioner of LFB, said earlier today that “we probably haven’t seen weather-related incidents on this scale before” as temperatures tipped over 40C in parts of the capital.

Leicester Fire and Rescue Service also said they were dealing with a grass fire off Bradgate Hill, Groby. They advised people to avoid the area and said that five pumps and a water carrier are at the scene.

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 18:40

‘Unprecedented’ 22 major wildfires across UK

National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) has recorded 22 major wildfires since 11am this morning and hundreds of smaller vegetation fires, reports The Independent’s climate correspondent Saphora Smith.

The NFCC’s reporting tool only records significant wildfires that meet one or more of its criteria, which includes that it impacts an area bigger than one hectare, has sustained flame lengths of more than 1.5 metres or presents a serious threat to life, environment, property and infrastructure.

Paul Hedley, the lead on wildfires for the council, said the volume of fires today was most likely unprecedented.

Chris Baynes19 July 2022 19:00

Heatwave leaves supermarket shelves empty as shoppers race to buy water and ice cream

The UK’s heatwave has emptied out supermarket shelves as shoppers snap up water and ice-cream in the scorching weather.

The country has been hit by days of extreme heat, with its hottest-ever temperature - 40.3C - recorded on Tuesday.

And according to images of bare supermarket shelves, it seems like Britons are doing all they can to stay cool in the exceptionally hot weather.

Shoppers have come across empty sections where bottled water normally is during the heatwave, which was forecast to peak on Monday and Tuesday.

A number posted social media, saying they had turned up to supermarkets to find water gone or very little left.

Heatwave leaves supermarket shelves empty as shoppers race to buy water and ice cream

Shopping spree comes as new record set for hottest-ever temperature

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 19:25

Do not have barbeques, London Fire Brigade urges

London Fire Brigrade have urged people not to have barbeques as they tackle an unprecedented number of fires across the capital.

Around 15 hectares of grassland and undergrowth is alight on Western Avenue in Uxbridge, the service tweeted. London mayor Sadiq Khan has previously said that the fire service received more than 1600 calls for assistance today.

Holly Bancroft19 July 2022 19:52

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