Video from News Copter 7 showed black smoke billowing from the Waste Management Julia Street Transfer Station located at 864 Julia Street in Elizabeth after a fire broke out around 2 p.m.
Officials said one of the workers at the facility is unaccounted for.
They said that the fire may have started from machinery inside the building, and while tons of trash stubbornly burned, the private garbage carting company doesn't handle any hazardous materials.
The smoke spewed into the surrounding community due to gusty winds and as a result, nearby houses were asked to evacuate.
No injuries have been reported so far.
Julia Street was shut down for a large stretch between Division Street and Route 1.
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There was no impact to operations at the nearby Newark Liberty International Airport with winds pushing the smoke away from the area.
There is currently are large fire south of the airport in Elizabeth, emergency personnel are on scene, there are no impacts to airport operations at this time.— Newark Liberty International Airport (@EWRairport) May 10, 2022
Officials said the fire is contained, but firefighters were expected to fight the blaze well into the night.
A disaster action team from Red Cross New Jersey was also on the scene.
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