polo ralph lauren baby Explosion on Aycliffe industrial estate
An eye witness said: “We heard a small bang, almost like a thump,
then a few seconds later there was an almighty explosion. It looked like the end of the world.”
Smoke and flames from the factory could be seen from the A1 motorway and police warned people to stay inside.
Fire engines from across the North East raced to the scene. Fire chiefs said the battle to bring the blaze under control is expected to go on all night.
A nearby garage has been evacuated.
Pupils at local schools took shelter inside before being allowed home.
A large police cordon has been placed around the scene.
Northern Rail has suspended its train service through Newton Aycliffe and Horndale Avenue is closed in all directions between Northfield Way, Pease Way and Greenfield Way.
Police are warning people nearby to stay indoors,
close all doors and windows.
There is currently no information about the cause of the fire.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has been informed.
The smoke plume from the fire is heading towards Darlington but it is not believed to be toxic and is not causing any problems for traffic. The fire service has advised that there is no risk of a secondary explosion.