Warning over toxic bin fumes after spate of fires

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Residents are being warned to secure their bins and recycling boxes after a spate of fires in the Mayfield area.

The fire service was called out six times last weekend to deal with bins taken from gardens and set on fire.

Councillor Wilma Chalmers, cabinet member for commercial operations at Midlothian Council, said: “We’re obviously very concerned to hear bins are being taken and set alight. Not only is this highly dangerous and a safety hazard – the fumes themselves must be very toxic – but it’s a waste of public time and money.”

A spokeswoman for Lothian and Borders Fire and Rescue Service said: “Wheelie bin fires pose a real nuisance and can be a serious threat if the fire from a bin spreads to neighbouring buildings, putting people and property at risk. Fire set deliberately also divert firefighters away from other duties as they must respond to these calls.

“The public can help us by ensuring wheelie bins are put away, preferably in a secure, out-of-sight location.”