Chiang Rai: Fire devastates central Mae Chan market

Photo courtesy of KhaoSod

A massive fire engulfed the bustling central market in Mae Chan, Chiang Rai, causing extensive damage and leaving vendors devastated. The blaze spread to adjacent buildings and destroyed numerous stalls, taking over two hours to put under control.

A ferocious fire broke out yesterday at Nuanchan Market, commonly known as Kad Lang Mae Chan, located along the Chan River in the municipality of Mae Chan, Chiang Rai. Authorities promptly mobilised fire trucks to combat the flames which were spreading rapidly.

Vendors were left in despair as the fire raged through the major market in central Mae Chan. The flames extended to adjacent buildings, destroying stalls and causing significant damage.

Mae Chan district officials, the Disaster Prevention and Mitigation Department of Mae Chan Municipality, Pa Tung Subdistrict Administrative Organisation, the Saeng Tham Public Charity Foundation in Chiang Rai, and various volunteer rescue teams joined forces to dispatch water trucks and extinguish the fire.

Efforts to put out the fire proved challenging due to the market’s narrow entry and exit points and the high density of small shops. Containing the fire took approximately two hours.

Fortunately, no injuries or fatalities were reported. However, numerous small shops and vendor stalls were severely damaged, with their goods and assets destroyed in the blaze.

Relentless flames

Witnesses reported seeing the fire originated near the market area close to the bridge over the river. At that time, vendors had closed their stalls and returned home, leaving the market empty.

The flames quickly intensified and spread, particularly affecting wooden shops storing dry goods, which served as an excellent fuel. The fire also extended to surrounding commercial buildings.

“It all started so suddenly. The flames were relentless, consuming everything in their path. We were helpless, watching our livelihoods go up in smoke.”

Officials today are working to assess the total damage and investigate the cause of the fire. Initial reports suggest that the fire’s rapid spread was exacerbated by the market’s wooden structures and the abundance of flammable materials.

“We’ve lost everything. Our shops, our products — everything is gone. It’s heartbreaking to see years of hard work reduced to ashes.”

Authorities are focusing on assisting the affected vendors and ensuring such incidents do not recur, reported KhaoSod.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing, with officials examining all possible factors that might have contributed to the blaze.

Northern Thailand NewsThailand News

Puntid Tantivangphaisal

Originally from Hong Kong, Puntid moved to Bangkok in 2020 to pursue further studies in translation. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature from the University of Hong Kong. Puntid spent 8 years living in Manchester, UK. Before joining The Thaiger, Puntid has been a freelance translator for 2 years. In her free time, she enjoys swimming and listening to music, as well as writing short fiction and poetry.

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