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A Burger King restaurant has burst into flames in York, with clouds of smoke billowing across the city.

Firefighters rushed to the scene at around 2.40pm today after reports of smoke coming out of the building's ceiling.

North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service confirmed that the blaze is in the roof of the property and crews are battling the flames with hoses and an aerial ladder.

There have been unconfirmed reports that the fire was caused by an extractor fan, according to YorkshireLive.

The news site reported that the roof of the restaurant was 'destroyed' in the blaze.

Workers at the fast-food restaurant were escorted to safety, with some panicked staff so stressed they had to go home, it is claimed.

Black smoke from the blaze is billowing across York

Sam Dixon-French, who is on holiday in the area, said there were lots of emergency service vehicles in the area.

He added that "billowing black smoke" was pouring from the building's roof, the BBC reports.

Mr Dixon-French said: "The road is closed and people are being urged to stay away."

Firefighters rushed to the scene to battle the flames
(Image: Yorkshire Live)

A spokesman for North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said: "Our control room received a call 14:41 to reports of smoke in the ceiling of a commercial property on Stirling Road in York.

"We’ve got a number of crews in attendance, including an aerial ladder platform. The water bowser from Tadcaster has also been requested to attend.

"The fire is in the roof of the building and crews are using main jets to tackle the fire. The aerial ladder platform is also in use.

"Crews are likely to be at the scene for some time."

A Burger King spokesman added: "We are aware of the incident at our York Clifton Moor Retail Park restaurant and a full investigation is underway into the cause of the fire.

"We can confirm there are no casualties and all employees and visitors have been evacuated safely. We want to thank the local fire brigade for their swift action."

North Yorkshire Police tweeted: "We are currently assisting @NorthYorksFire following a fire at a commercial property at Clifton Moor Retail Park #York we have put restrictions in place to keep everyone safe and ask that you avoid the area if possible."