Reporter at the scene
“Crowds of onlookers have gathered to watch as smoke billows from a derelict building in Sunderland.
“Locals say the fire, in what is thought to be a disused waste disposal site, began at around 6.30pm.
“Flames can still be seen inside the building and a huge plume of smoke is visible from as far away as Tyneside.”
Onlooker David Cairns, 43, from Sunderland, said:
“I think it’s an old waste disposal centre, but it’s derelict now. I have been here watching all night, I think it started around 6.30pm. The firefighters seemed to be getting a grip of it but then it just flares up again. I have been here hours.”
Another eyewitness, Gordon Peacock, 43, from South Shields, added:
“It seems to have started inside the building.”