Evacuation over chemical fear

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AN INDUSTRIAL estate has been evacuated amid fears that highly flammable gas cylinders could explode in a major fire.

Firefighters are investigating the blaze involving a number of chemical cylinders at Carlisle House, in Atherton Industrial Centre, Bolton Road, at 12.40pm on Friday after a rubbish fire broke out.

Specialist fire officers were called to identify the chemicals and to assess their danger.

It is thought they may be acetylene and as a precaution a cordon was put in place and staff at nearby Bet Fred were ordered to leave nearby premises.

Bolton Road was closed to traffic both ways for 300 metres.

The cause of the blaze is not yet known as inquiries are ongoing with both the fire and police.