Updated at 10:01 a.m.
GARWOOD, NJ – A section of the vacant Paperboard factory on North Avenue collapsed Wednesday morning taking down power lines with it and causing authorities to close the street, a fire official said.
Nobody was injured in the collapse that happened at about 8:30 a.m., Fire Chief Allan Tweedle said.
Because it was leaning precariously, the factory had been slated for demolition the night prior but the work was delayed due to anticipated storms, Tweedle said on the scene.
“Luckily, one of the employees who was working on a piece of equipment came out and stopped everybody so nobody was hurt,” Tweedle said.
Authorities cut power to the area and are completing the building’s demolition today, he said.
As of 10 a.m., power was out at the ShopRite in Garwood. An employee there said the supermarket remained open but that only non-perishable items were available for purchase.
Police in neighboring Westfield advised that North Avenue was closed and told the public to avoid the area.
“Avoid North Avenue by the Garwood border due to an emergency in Garwood,” police said in an alert. “Expect traffic delays in that area.”