GREATER Manchester Fire and Rescue Service says a new procedure to deal with gas bottle situations will reduce hazard zone disruption.

Last year firefighters dealt with seven acetylene-related incidents and the new system of handling such situations allows for a quicker return to normality following an incident.

Now the regulation 200m cordon imposed in the vicinity of such an hazard which previously could remain in place for as long as a full day could potentially be reduced to a two hour cooling and monitoring procedure.

Jim Collins, GMFRS' Hazardous Substances manager, said: "This has obvious benefits for local businesses and the local community.

"The disruption to the local community and businesses has been greatly reduced without health and safety being compromised."