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Fire guts supermarket, destroys goods

By | July 19th 2011

By Emma Malin

Business was disrupted along Ronald Ngala Street after fire broke out inside Ukwala Supermarket.

The fire, which started at midnight, took at least seven hours to extinguish.

Fire fighters said the delay was caused by inaccessibility to building’s upper floors. The fire is said to have started in a shop on the second floor before spreading to the third floor.

"Penetrating the building’s second floor was hard and this slowed the process," said Major Jason Nyandwege from the National Disaster Operation Centre. Although the cause of the fire was not immediately established, managers of the supermarket said they had their suspicions.

"We suspect it was an electric fault as no gas cylinders in the supermarket exploded. However, we are awaiting confirmation reports from the police once they are done with their investigation," said Rohit Shah, the manager and owner of the supermarket.

A total of 10 fire engines were used in the exercise on Monday, with four from the Fire Brigade Department, two from the Department of Defence, KK Securex Services and G4S Security Company respectively.

Though a city council fire engine was at the scene, it proved to be useless since it was not working.

There were no casualties as the fire broke out before workers reported to work. The police, with assistance from Kenya Power, are investigating the cause of the fire.

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