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Blaze tackled at industrial estate

Firefighters are battling a large blaze on an industrial estate in Lancashire.

Huge flames have been seen shooting into the night sky at Lancashire Enterprise Business Park in Leyland, which is home to a number of businesses and warehouses.

Local reports also suggested explosions could be heard coming from the blaze, with a large fiery glow cast over the site on Centurion Way in the town.

Police were called just before 5.20pm on Wednesday and a cordon has been put in place on local roads, with motorists warned to avoid the area. People living close to the site have also been warned to stay indoors and keep windows closed due to the amount of smoke in the area. Twenty homes were evacuated but a technical support team deemed the chemicals not to be harmful.

Lancashire Police say there are no reports of injuries and there is nothing to suggest any danger to locals. A spokesman for Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service said the blaze took hold quickly and one of the buildings involved in the fire is a warehouse storing toilet roll.

Firemen determined early on there were no people trapped in buildings but some residents were evacuated from nearby homes as a precaution. Smoke coming from the blaze proved not to be toxic.

Paul Richardson, a spokesman for the fire service, said crews had now completely surrounded the blaze to hose it down and firefighters had successfully stopped the flames from spreading any further, but a number of buildings could not be saved and were completely destroyed.

He added: "The fire will be contained but it is unlikely to be out completely for two to three days at least." A joint investigation by police and fire crews to find out the cause of the blaze will be held once the scene is under control.

Between 130 and 150 firefighters were called to the blaze, manning eight fire engines, two aerial ladders and a high-volume water pump.

No buildings had collapsed, according to a Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service spokesman, but up to five buildings had been destroyed. It is thought the building storing tissue paper caught fire and flames spread rapidly to a neighbouring building, storing chemicals.

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