Firefighters are continuing to tackle a fire which has broken out in the Maydown area of Derry.
Smoke plumes can be seen from as far away as Creggan Heights and Shipquay Street, as the large former Brikkiln site on Electra Road is overcome with flames.
Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service are advising “homeowners and businesses in the area to close windows, as the waste management fire remains ongoing.”
Earlier today they also confirmed that eleven fire appliances were attending the scene.
“Two fire appliances from Crescent Link Fire Station, three fire appliances from Northland Fire Station, two fire appliances from Strabane Fire Station, three fire appliances from Omagh Fire Station and one fire appliance from Dungiven Fire Station have been deployed to the scene. The call was received at 8:38am this morning.
“It is believed that over 40 firefighters are dealing with the incident.
“There are no further details at this stage.”
The Environment Minister Mark H Durkan said, “What we see here is a major fire, causing considerable damage, not just to the property but also to the environment. That gives me grave cause for concern.”
At the scene of the fire a member of staff from the nearby Coolkeeragh Power Station said they were originally concerned with the proximity of the blaze to a nearby gas line, but while it seemed a safe distance away, it was “very close to power lines”.
A spokesperson for NIE said, “We have engineers on site and they are monitoring the situation. At the minute there is no loss of electricity supply to customers.”
Sinn Féin Councillor Paul Fleming commented, “This is a major fire and I hope that it can brought under control as quickly as possible. Of paramount importance also is the safety of local residents who live nearby. I would urge anyone with chest problems or breathing difficulties to stay indoors until this incident is over.”
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This is a breaking news story. More updates to follow.