Hillsborough Township schools closed as massive warehouse fire burns

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HILLSBOROUGH TOWNSHIP, N.J. — All schools in Hillsborough Township are closed Friday as firefighters continue to battle a six-alarm blaze at a warehouse in Victory Industrial Park, the school district said.

All after-school events are also canceled, the district said.

The fire broke out about 3:30 p.m. Thursday at a huge warehouse building located at 152 U.S. 206, not far from a residential area.

The inferno sent flames shooting hundreds of feet skyward and thick black smoke billowing above the site. It could be seen and smelled for miles, and the smoke was detected by weather radar.

The fire has been contained but flames are still ripping through the complex and smoke continued to billow Friday morning. What sparked the blaze is unknown.

Fire officials say plastic pellets were being stored in most of the complex and environmental officials have been testing air quality.

So far, they say the air is safe. Still, residents are told to stay inside and keep their windows closed.

The 300,000-square-foot complex was once used to house old military munitions and is near historic Duke Farms. The estate that belonged to the late tobacco heiress Doris Duke has not been damaged.

A firefighter suffered a minor leg injury.

Issues with water pressure and below freezing temperatures has made it difficult for firefighters to extinguish the flames.

Route 206 was shut down because of heavy, black smoke pouring from the fire site. A majority of the road had been reopened Friday morning.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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