Firefighters had been battling a big blaze early Saturday morning at a chemical plant in Passaic, N.J., that had erupted the night time earlier than, sending towering flames into the sky and clouds of smoke wafting by the area.
No main accidents had been reported, town’s mayor mentioned, however the hearth was nonetheless raging.
“We’re going to be combating this fireplace for days,” the mayor, Hector C. Lora, mentioned in a short phone interview earlier than daybreak.
Mr. Lora had urged residents on Friday night time to keep away from the realm to permit firefighters from across the area to battle the 11-alarm blaze on the plant, which homes an organization, Qualco, that manufactures chlorine for swimming swimming pools. Mr. Lora mentioned he was additionally asking residents to close their home windows to maintain out the smoke.
In an earlier phone interview on Friday night time, Mr. Lora mentioned that about 100,000 kilos of chlorine within the plant had been “impacted” by the fireplace, the warmth from the flames or water from the firefighters’ hoses.
Because of this, he mentioned, a Reverse 911 name went out to residents within the metropolis and in Bergen County, advising them to maintain their home windows shut. He mentioned, nonetheless, that the a part of the plant the place many of the chlorine was saved had not been affected.
“We aren’t at a spot the place we consider the hazard or the menace would justify evacuations,” Mr. Lora mentioned, including that if there have been poisonous fumes, the firefighters “would have been pulled from the positioning.”
Mr. Lora mentioned within the later interview, shortly after 4 a.m., that environmental officers had been monitoring air high quality within the space and that no evacuation orders had been issued. Mr. Lora himself was nonetheless on the scene, talking from a automotive parked close to the chemical plant.
Patrick Trentacost Sr., the Passaic hearth chief, mentioned about 11 p.m. Friday that the chlorine that had burned was “nothing to be involved about presently.”
“However we’re monitoring it continually,” he mentioned. “We have now firms within the chemical manufacturing unit, and we’re watching very intently the place this fireplace goes.”
Mr. Lora estimated on Friday night time that greater than 200 firefighters from the area had responded to the fireplace, which started simply after 8:30 p.m. He mentioned on Saturday morning that various them had been despatched house.
One firefighter had sustained a minor eye damage, and there had been just a few “slips and falls,” he mentioned. However there had been no main accidents.
Mr. Lora mentioned on Friday that he had spoken to Gov. Philip D. Murphy, who dispatched state environmental and emergency administration officers to the scene.
“We received’t be capable of totally examine till hearth is totally put out,” Mr. Lora wrote on Fb. “It could take a while to ascertain trigger. Fundamental problem with chlorine hearth is wind.”
Mr. Murphy said on Twitter that he was urging “everybody in Passaic to remain secure,” and he requested these close to the fireplace to maintain their home windows closed.
“Praying for the security of our first responders on the scene,” Mr. Murphy wrote.
Video posted on social media confirmed a large ball of flame erupting alongside the facet of a freeway as thick clouds of smoke roared into the sky. The flames drew crowds of onlookers, a few of whom reported listening to explosions and seeing sparks.
New York City officials said that residents there would possibly see or odor smoke from the fireplace in Passaic, a metropolis of about 70,000 residents, which is about 10 miles from Manhattan.