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Fire destroys Kandal market stalls

Fire destroys Kandal market stalls

081216_04_2.jpg
081216_04_2.jpg

Firefighters say an electrical device left on overnight is the most likely cause of the blaze

Photo by: TRACEY SHELTON

A firefighter at Kandal market on Sunday night.

FOUR stalls at Phnom Penh's Kandal market burned to the ground late Sunday night before firefighters finally extinguished what officials called an "unintentional" blaze likely caused by a fan or rice cooker left on overnight.

"I went to meet with the market chief again this morning [Monday] to discuss the main reason for the fire, and we assume that it was caused by an electric device that was left on," said Dy Eav, a deputy with the Municipal Fire Department, adding that nobody was injured.

"It is careless for sellers not to turn off their electrical devices," he said.

Local staff first responders

The fire was detected by market security guards, who first fought against the flames with the market's own small firetruck. Municipal firefighters arrived 20 minutes later with 11 trucks and prevented the blaze from spreading.

"The other guards and I were very frightened when we saw the fire coming from inside one of the shops," said a market security guard who requested anonymity, adding that he found a rice cooker and fan still plugged in at the shop.

But the owner of the stall, shop 158, told the Post that she had turned off all her electrical equipment.  

"It is not right that I did not turn off the rice cooker because I had not used it [that day], and the electricity is always turned off at night in the market," she said.

After just one week in the position, market chief Sun Dany said she would do her best to determine exactly what happened.

"We normally turn off the electricity of every shop after 7pm, but sometimes it does not happen," she said. 

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