A large fire broke out in a Be'er Sheva junkyard on Melacha Street Monday, causing extensive damage but no injuries. Smoke has encased the south Israel city.

Fire officials from several stations in the area are currently attempting to get the fire under control and prevent it from spreading to nearby homes.

Police believe the fire was either an act of arson or due to negligence, and are investigating the circumstances under which the fire was started. The thick cloud of smoke that has filled the Be'er Sheva sky is suspected to be due to someone setting a canister of gasoline or tires on fire.

Melacha Street has been closed to traffic from all directions as a result of the blaze, and the density of the smoke is making it difficult to drive in many parts of the city.