Residents Allowed Home After Essex Fire

28 October 2011, 11:50 | Updated: 28 October 2011, 16:37

A 200-metre exclusion zone has been lifted after a fire at a garage in Rayleigh.

Fire crews were called to Bull Lane on Friday morning and the road was closed for safety reasons.

100 people had to be evacuated earlier but have now been allowed to return to their homes.

Assistant Divisional Officer Simon Dedman, incident commander, said: "We were conducting regular tests on the cylinder to establish whether or not it was safe as well as cooling it constantly.

"These tests have shown that the cylinder is now safe and stable and presents no danger so there is no need to maintain the hazard zone.

"Under our new procedures we have the flexibility to make a decision about the hazard zone based on what the tests revealed and this has meant that we have managed to get everyone back in their homes as quickly as possible.

"We are all pleased that this incident has come to a reasonably swift conclusion and everyone can safely return home."