A FIERCE fire that took 45 minutes to extinguish broke out at a plastic factory in Sathupradit Soi 24 around noon today (Feb. 21) completely destroying the single-storey plant and four adjacent houses but there were no fatalities, Thai Rath newspaper said.
Pol. Lt. Col. Phattharaphong Wichaidit, duty officer at Phraya Krai police station, was alerted of the fire at K.M.Plaspack Co. Ltd at 12.40 p.m. and quickly rushed there after calling for fire engines and volunteers from Por Tek Tung Foundation to go in.
When he arrived he saw that the single-storey, approximately 200-square-metre plastic factory was ablaze with flame and black smoke rising and spreading out. People living nearby fled in terror clutching their belongings and pets as they did so.
Firemen had difficulty putting out this blaze because the plastic was very flammable while the alley was too narrow for fire engines to get in. Moreover there was strong wind blowing periodically. This led to four adjacent wooden houses also being destroyed. However they managed to put it out in 45 minutes .
Mr. Nontapon Sermsiriwiwat, 48, the owner of this factory, said there was no one there today and he suspected a faulty electric system sparked the blaze. He checked his factory via closed circuit cameras linked to his mobile phone at 11.30 a.m. and everything appeared normal.
However at around noon someone called to tell him that a fire had erupted and he rushed there. He added that his factory had been operating for over 30 years and this was the first time a fire had broken out.
Mr. Jiraphong Krobkaew, a neighbour, said it was around noon that he saw smoke and fire spreading from the production side of the building and it quickly spread to the office area with the whole structure now gutted. Added that no one was injured because today is Sunday and there were no workers around.
Police are investigating this fire including questioning the factory owner and people living nearby. An estimate of the damage can only be worked out after forensic examination is completed.
Fire is raging at the Sathupradit factory today. Photos: Thai Rath