Residents were being evacuated Friday night after a six-alarm fire erupted in a chemical plant close to downtown Passaic, New Jersey.
The fire was spreading to multiple buildings at the Qualco chemical plant, and the entire structure was expected to be destroyed, Passaic Mayor Hector Lora told NewJersey.com. The fire was also spreading to nearby Majestic Industries.
Officials feared toxic fumes would harm nearby workers and residents.
Though the fire had yet reached a section of the plant where chemicals were stored, small explosions were beginning to be heard, indicating the blaze was coming close to the chemicals, according to Lora.
"There have been bad fires, but this is the worst that I've ever seen," he said.
Residents were being evacuated from the area close to the blaze. Others were advised to keep their windows closed.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.
This article originally appeared on HuffPost and has been updated.