One hundred firefighters are battling a huge fire at a club and neighbouring industrial site in north Greenwich. London Fire Brigade sent 15 fire engines after flames took hold of the Studio 338 bar on Boord Street in east London, off the A102 and near to the O2 Arena. A recycling yard and some industrial units were also set alight and a man had to be rescued from the blaze.
Firefighters were called to the scene at around 11.40am on Monday (8 August) where a tower of black smoke billowed hundreds of metres into the air could be seen 12-miles west in central London.
A large part of the ground floor of a nightclub and part of its first floor were alight and the industrial warehouse was completely alight.
An eyewitnesses photo from the scene showed the rear of the club completely consumed by flames, which forced a warning for nearby residents to close their windows and doors as a result of the smoke.
A scrap paper processing yard containing a number of outbuildings was damaged along with around 40 pallets of paper. Some gas cylinders were involved in the fire and as cylinders can explode when exposed to heat a safety cordon has been set up.
A Brigade spokesperson said: "Firefighters wearing breathing apparatus rescued a man who has been taken to hospital by ambulance. This is a large fire and the smoke could be seen from across London, meaning we received a large number of emergency calls. Firefighters will be at the scene for the rest of the day, and possibly into the evening." A spokesperson earlier said there had been dozens of calls relating to the incident.
Fire engines deployed cranes to douse the fire and local businesses took precautions and closed their doors and windows to prevent smoke coming in. Millenium Way and Brood Street were closed as drivers were warned of smoke drifting across the carriageway.
In total the brigade received more than 50 emergency calls and fire engines from East Greenwich, Greenwich, Plumstead, Eltham, Deptford, Lewisham, Poplar, Whitechapel, and Bethnal Green all assisted in the effort to quell the fire.
Builder Paul Roker, of Murphy's Construction, was working near the fire when he was told to evacuated. "We saw all the smoke and debris coming over, and all these little embers, so we were told to evacuate," he told IBTimes UK.
"We saw the smoke at the start, then it just got worse, then it started blasting out black smoke. Once the fire is contained and made safe, then we 've been told we can go back to work."
Steve Edwards, who works at the nearby Evening Standard distribution warehouse, said: "We knew it was a big fire when we first saw it. The flames were all going down the side, the roof was on fire, it wasn't in our yard by then. The fire brigade came almost immediately and we were told to move out about 12.10. It was really catching hold by then. The firefighters have obviously controlled it slightly now as the smoke has turned from black to white."
Almost five hours after receiving the first emergency call firefighters had extinguished most of the fire but the area continues to smoulder and water is being pumped from various points.