A FIRE ripped through a waste site near Ewelme on Saturday evening.
There was a huge pall of black smoke over the Grundon plant in Goulds Grove as the blaze raged and firefighters spent much of the night bringing the blaze under control.
A 200m cordon was set up around the site as the fire was declared a major incident by the emergency services.
Residents as far away as Sonning Common and Nettlebed were advised to keep their windows and doors shut as a precaution.
Ten fire appliances and several support appliances were called to the scene.
A spokesman for the Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “This was an accidental fire caused by rags impregnated with grease, affected by sunlight.”
The firefighters were supported by colleagues from Buckinghamshire as well as Thames Valley Police, the Environment Agency, Oxfordshire County Council’s emergency planning team, South Oxfordshire District Council, Grundon, Thames Water, the National Chemicals Emergency Centre and the voluntary sector.
Nigel Wilson, fire and rescue incident commander, said: “I would like to pay tribute to all those who played a part in dealing with a challenging situation in such a professional and effective way.”