Firefighters remain at the scene of a fire at an industrial building in Saltney, which was earlier sending thick plumes of smoke into the air.
Crews were called to the industrial building on the site of Lancashire Fuels in River Lane, Saltney, at 8.08am today.
At the height of the flames, which ripped through the roof of the unit resulting in thick black smoke billowing into the sky, around 30 firefighters from eight crews were at the scene.
They were pumping water from the River Dee to deal with the fire and damp down the building which has been left heavily damaged.
John Jones, who works at nearby Geotechnics, said: “I initially saw the black smoke then someone shouted that there was a fire.
"It didn't take long to get going. We could see flames coming out of the side and the roof. It's badly damaged.
"The firefighters were here quite quickly."
In total there were five fire engines – two from Deeside, two from Cheshire and one from Flint – along with the aerial ladder platform from Wrexham, the high volume pump from Llandudno and the incident command unit from Rhyl.
The cause of the blaze has not yet been confirmed, and a North Wales Fire and Rescue Service spokeswoman said: “We still have crews working at the incident. The fire involved tonnes of recycled waste which resulted in black smoke being visible in the area.”
Lancashire Fuels 4 U Ltd had a planning application to turn recycled waste into biomass fuel granted by Flintshire council last month, although they require a permit from Natural Resources Wales before the process can begin.
The company arrived at the old Bostik’s plant at the end of last year and began bringing in a “substantial amount” of waste material with the local authority receiving “a few odour complaints”, according to the council report to the planning committee.
County councillor for Saltney Stonebridge, Veronica Gay, said she was “extremely concerned” by the incident and wants the authority to look into how the site is managed.
She added: “I’ve been down to the site twice today and the firefighters told me it will be a two or three day operation.”
Dave Powell, of Natural Resources Wales, said: “Our officers are on site to assist the North Wales Fire and Rescue Service and assess the potential impact of this incident on the environment.
“Our biggest concern in incidents such as this is dealing with the water that’s used to fight the blaze. It picks up a lot of pollutants from the burning material and can cause a lot of damage if it gets into streams and rivers. At present the pollution appears to be contained.”
Public Health Wales said it does not expect people living near to the fire to be exposed to smoke at levels that pose an “elevated health risk”.
The Daily Post made repeated attempts to contact Lancashire Fuels but were met with an answer phone message stating that the “office is unattended at present”.