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Last Updated: Wednesday May 04 2011 14:10 GMT

Leah goes behind-the-scenes at a wildfire

Leah at the fire

Leah reports from big forest fire

The hot weather and lack of rain has meant that the ground is very dry, leading to loads of wild fires across the UK. We sent Leah to the front line of firefighting as crews tackle a blaze in Berkshire.


I've never witnessed wildfires in my lifetime so covering this story was going to be a real eye-opener.

Firefighters taking a break
The firefighters were covered in ash

Before we could even get anywhere close to Swinley Forest there was a police cordon and security was really tight.

We had to be escorted by a police bike to meet up with the fire crews.

As we got closer though the smell of burning was so overwhelming. About 150 firefighters are battling the blaze and as we drove to the media centre there were firefighters taking a break on the roadside covered in grey and black dust.

Leah at the wild fire centre
Leah at the incident centre

The fire and rescue service have set up a mobile incident centre - a sort of headquarters - where they can control who's doing what.

The crew here are working really hard. The fire engines have 18,000 litres of water on-board and these yellow pumps shift 3,000 litres of water a minute and they are covering over six miles of forest.

The smell of smoke is so strong it's clung to my hair and clothes.

It really is amazing to see all the work that goes on behind-the-scenes and the hard work that the firefighters put in.