Fire causes evacuation order in Indiana city near Ohio line

RICHMOND, Ind. (AP) – Authorities urged people to evacuate Tuesday near a large industrial fire in an Indiana city near the Ohio border that sent massive clouds of black smoke into the sky.

The fire was in Richmond in Wayne County, 70 miles (112.6 kilometers) east of Indianapolis.

Indiana State Police said the blaze was at the former Hoffco factory, which closed in 2009. Mayor Dave Snow described it as a “serious, large-scale fire.”

“Many units are on scene,” Snow said on Facebook. “Please avoid this area if possible, as it is dangerous, and allow our first responders room to get this under control.”

The evacuation order applied to people living within a half-mile (0.80 kilometer) of the fire. People outside that radius who live downwind of the fire were advised to keep windows closed and pets inside.

Bethesda Worship Center offered temporary shelter for people forced out of their homes, while other agencies were trying to arrange hotel rooms if necessary, Pastor Ken Harris told The Associated Press.

No other details were immediately available.

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