Four people feared trapped after explosion at flour mill in UK
Published 17/07/2015 | 10:49
Four people may be trapped following an explosion and fire, say police.
Cheshire Police said a major incident had been declared following an incident at Wood Flour Mills in Bosley, near Macclesfield.
The force tweeted that all emergency services were on site and warned local residents to close windows and doors because of smoke in the area.
Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service said it was called to reports of an explosion at a wood mill in Tunstall Road at about 9.10am.
It said fire engines from Congleton, Bollington, Winsford, Crewe and Macclesfield attended, including an aerial appliance from Macclesfield and one from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service.
Fifteen fire engines are at the scene dealing with the aftermath of two explosions, Cheshire Fire and Rescue said.
"It is believed at this stage that four people are trapped", a spokesman said.
Student Charli Alston, 18, was walking her dog with a friend when she witnessed the explosion at 9am.
Ms Alston, who lives about three miles away on a hill overlooking the factory, described hearing a "huge bang". She said: "I was walking down my drive and there was just a huge bang. It sounded like a thunder cloud, we didn't know what it was because it was sunny then.
"We looked over and there were massive plumes of flames. Almost as high as the hill next to it.
"I couldn't tell you how high the flames were, but I'd say a good 70 metres into the air. Huge. The sound was really really loud and there was loads of billowing black smoke.
"We phoned 999 straight away, because it was pretty terrifying watching it."
Ms Alston said the hills were still filled with smoke. "There's still a lot of smoke around my house," she said. "We've shut all the doors and there's still a lot of smoke coming from the actual factory covering the surrounding areas. You can't really see very well."