FIREFIGHTERS have spent the day tackling a major leak at a fuel depot in south Essex.

They were first called to the site in Oliver Road, West Thurrock, around 10.20am today and have remained at the scene throughout the day.

It was initially thought around 600 litres of fuel had leaked at the depot, but in an update at lunchtime the fire service revealed that figure had risen to around 3,000.

It sent crews from Grays, Orsett, Rayleigh Weir, Corringham, Stansted and Hawkwell to the scene, along with the urban search and rescue team.

They were eventually able to isolate the leak and stop more fuel from pouring out.

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A blanket of foam was then applied to the fuel to make it safe.

On-site engineers helped with the operation and firefighters have remained the depot throughout the afternoon to assist with the clear-up operation.

A fire service spokesman said the fuel was contained in a 12 metre by 10 metre bund - a structure built around the fuel tank to contain spills and leaks.

He added the entire bund where the leak began has now been covered in foam.