KARON: Eight shophouses near the Central Waterfront Tower in Karon were damaged yesterday afternoon in a fire that caused damage estimated at around 10 million baht.
Some of the three-story buildings in the row were still under construction and the fire is believed to have started when electricians welding steel in one of the houses dropped sparks into a can of paint thinner, causing an explosion that blew a hole in the wall with the adjoining house.
The electricians and carpenters, apparently deciding the fire was too big for them to put out, fled the building as the fire spread rapidly to neighboring properties.
Five fire trucks from Karon arrived at the scene, but the firemen decided they needed help and more trucks were called in from Patong and Rawai.
Even so, it took more than 90 minutes to put out the fire.
Offices and shops damaged in the blaze included a travel agency, a minimart, a tailor’s shop and the Andaman Sea Food restaurant.
Pol Lt Col Peeraphan Meemak of Chalong Police Station, told the Gazette that officers had established the cause of the blaze.
He said, “The fire started in a house that was being worked on. The owner had hired electricians and carpenters and they were working quickly.
“The electricians were welding steel near a wall when the sparks dropped into a can of thinners and that caused an explosion which broke through the wall into next door, and the fire spread rapidly from there.”
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