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Fires in Devon could be left to burn by firefighters as a new deal is struck with the Environment Agency.
It would only be if it is safe to do so but it is hoped it will lead to less environmental damage and health-risks caused by contaminated water.
Watch Manager Paul Jenkins says it is about finding the balance: "deciding to use main jets and create a lot of run off could be a risk to drinking water so there is an awful lot of elements that we look at before deciding on a controlled burn policy."
But he told Heart that safety is the biggest concern: ""a lot of it comes down to the wind direction, the height of the plume. Ultimately we might decide to let the incident burn - but obviously make arrangements to make sure that incident can't get worse."