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Fire destroys supermarket, warehouse, bakery

Litia Cava
Wednesday, January 25, 2017

AN early morning fire at Korovou Town in Tailevu yesterday destroyed a supermarket, a bakery, a warehouse and left three families homeless.

Three National Fire Authority (NFA) trucks rushed to the scene and were able to prevent the fire from spreading to adjacent shops.

Tenant Ashika Lata said the fire started about 6am.

"I was out of bed and was trying to get my husband ready for work when I suddenly heard shouting and I saw the families rushing out of their homes," she said.

"The first thing we did was to get our gas cylinders and stoves out of the house and each family managed to save a few clothes and other household items."

The three families renting in the flat near the supermarket and warehouse for more than five years lost majority of their belongings in the blaze.

Owner of 360 Events Fiji warehouse Gyan Prasad described the incident as "shocking and sad". Mr Prasad has been operating his business in Korovou for the past five years.

"I was opening the door of my warehouse when suddenly I heard a huge explosion from inside the bakery. When I looked I saw flames and smoke," he said.

"I tried to get in the warehouse to save some of my sound systems and other electric gadgets but it was too late, the fire had spread very quickly."

Mr Prasad's warehouse also included a billiard shop and a brushcutter spare parts shop.

He said the estimated damage to his business was about $280,000.

The owner of Shop and Gain Supermarket and Bakery, Simon Shalen, also said the fire spread quickly.

"I've been operating my business here for the past nine years and I received the news that my supermarket and bakery had been destroyed," he said.

"Luckily all my eight employees are safe and no one was injured in the incident."

Mr Shalen said the estimated damage to his business was about $2 million.

NFA is investigating to ascertain the cause of the fire.

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