Two in hospital as fire sweeps through Dagenham grassland

Drone picture of the blaze firefighters are fighting in Dagenham

Drone picture of the blaze firefighters are fighting in Dagenham while they urge people to keep windows closed after a man and woman were taken to hospital suffering smoke inhalation - Credit: Dean Marsh

A man and woman have been taken to hospital as fire fighters tackle a blaze in Dagenham urging residents to keep their windows closed.

Fifteen fire engines and around 100 firefighters are tackling a fire on Ballards Road which is creating additional hotspots in the area. 

The blaze involves a wide area of grassland and a range of properties, London Fire Brigade said. 

One man and one woman have been taken to hospital suffering from smoke inhalation. 

Borough commander Paul McClenaghan, who is at the scene, said: "Crews initially attended a significant grassfire which involved multiple seats of fire and also affected a range of buildings and a workshop.

"As firefighters were tackling that blaze, the fire was creating additional hotspots of fire which is now affecting sheds and further nearby properties.

"A number of properties have been evacuated on both sides of the road.

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"Our firefighters are working in incredibly hot, difficult conditions. There are cylinders involved in the fire which is adding to the challenge for crews.

"The fire is creating lots of thick smoke and we would advise local residents to close doors and windows.

"There are number of local road closures in place so motorists are asked to please avoid the area where possible."

The Brigade's 999 control officers have taken more than 40 calls to the blaze, the first at 2.15pm.

Fire crews from Whitechapel, Leytonstone, Millwall, Clapham and surrounding fire stations are at the scene.

The cause of the fire is not known at this stage.