The cause of a scrapyard fire that took seven fire crews more than three hours to extinguish has been confirmed.

The fire took hold at Waterston Car Breakers near Milford Haven at around 11am yesterday (Monday, April 15).

Around 150 cars were alight at the scrapyard and nearby residents were evacuated from their homes.

A total of 12 fire appliances and fire crews from Milford Haven, Pembroke Dock, Narberth, Fishguard, Carmarthen, Tenby and Haverfordwest crews were called to the blaze at the Waterston Industrial Estate.

Crews used around 1,000 litres of foam as well as nine hose reel jets, two ground monitors and six breathing apparatus sets to extinguish the fire.

Properties in close proximity to the fire were evacuated and nearby roads were closed. Dyfed-Powys Police and Pembrokeshire County Council helped with the evacuation of residents. Police officers from the neighbourhood policing team also visited houses in the area, advising occupants to keep windows and doors closed until the smoke had dispersed.

The Welsh Ambulance Service was also in attendance.

Those living nearby were advised to stay indoors, close windows and doors, and turn off any air conditioning or ventilation units.

Drivers in the area were told to keep windows closed, turn off air conditioning and keep air vents closed.

Fire crews began to leave the scene at 2.11pm yesterday and an investigation into the cause of the blaze began.

A spokesperson for Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service confirmed that it was started by accident.

“The fire was extinguished yesterday, and the Business Fire Safety Team has confirmed the cause of the fire was accidental,” said the spokesperson.

A statement from Waterston Car Breakers on social media thanked those who had been in touch. It also expressed gratitude to Mid and West Wales Fire Brigade, Valero energy and all those who had helped during the incident yesterday.

“Not quite the day we had planned,” read the post. “Thankfully no-one was hurt.

“Thanks to everyone who has reached out and apologies to anyone inconvenienced- especially our neighbours.

“Big big thanks to Mid and West Wales Fire Brigade, Valero Energy and everyone else who helped.”

The scrap yard said that new stock was now urgently required.

This was the second major fire at the Waterston Industrial Estate this year. In January firefighters were called to a blaze at TBS Recycling.

During that incident crews from six stations dealt with the fire throughout the afternoon and overnight, and the B4325 was closed from Waterston to Black Bridge.

The cause of that fire was attributed to lithium batteries in a controlled area for waste electronics.