FIREMEN took over 30 minutes to extinguish a blaze at 400-year-old Wat Rat Banthom this afternoon (July 20) with some Buddha images, the roof and wooden beams as well as the interior walls being damaged, Matichon newspaper said.
At 12.45 p.m. Pol.Lt.Col. Rakchat Prasobhon, an investigator at Nakhon Luang police station, was alerted of a fire breaking out at this temple and quickly sent firemen and volunteers from Ayutthaya Ruamjai Association to go put it out while himself accompanying a police team there to inspect.
At the scene he saw the roof ablaze with local residents and monks working hard in trying to put it out. Firemen had to pry open a braced frame to spray water on the roof and within the Ubosot hall and it took over 30 minutes to extinguish it.
The blaze damaged the roof and the wooden beams with the walls of the Ubosot hall and Buddha images as well as other articles charred.
Phra Kru Chakhon Thammasophon, the abbot of this temple, said there was no one there when the fire broke out and he was alerted by some local people who shouted out that the old temple was on fire. Monks and people living nearby tried but failed to put it out with firemen finally extinguishing it.
He added that this temple, which resembles a wooden sailing ship, is from the Ayutthaya period and is around 400 years old while also mentioning that he did not know the cause of the fire.
The police team cordoned off the temple with investigators to find how the blaze started.
The fire at Wat Rat Banthom and the damage it caused. Photos: Matichon