‘Leeds is on fire’: Giant chemical blaze causes dangerous smoke warning

Canal Mills evacuated and residents told to keep windows closed as firefighters tackle Leeds blaze

Firefighters are battling a huge blaze after a chemical storage building caught fire last night.

Residents in Leeds city centre have been warned to keep windows and doors closed due to potentially dangerous fumes.

Canal Mills nightclub was evacuated and nearby roads were shut as up to 80 firefighters attempted to tackle the inferno.

A spokesperson for West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said Tradpak, a packaging firm used for chemical storage caught fire at around 01:50 this morning.

They added: “The matter is being treated as a large building fire by firefighters but, as with any fire producing large amounts of smoke, nearby residents are being urged to keep doors and windows closed while the smoke clears.”

Leeds Met student Anja Swan said she heard explosions which sounded like thunder.

She said: “I called my friend and they said they could see a fire so we had a walk down.”

“We could see massive, massive clouds of thick black smoke, just billowing out into the air. We could see this even from our house about half a mile or so away.

She added: “There were fireballs shooting. It was really ferocious. Like Armageddon. It’s a really huge fire. It was really quite scary. It was absolutely massive.”

Area fire manager Ian Dunkley, urged people not come to watch crews dealing with the fire, which has been “surrounded”

“The initial crews were trying to protect surrounding properties and, in fact, we’ve saved three surrounding businesses which will be available to open tomorrow,” he said.

Crews are expected to remain at the scene throughout the day.