A building housing a luxury timber furniture workshop, as well as workers’ quarters, was largely reduced to ash just outside the Raksmey Pich Hotel in Stung Treng’s province capital yesterday.
Bun Rattanak, chief of police in Stung Treng town’s Sras Russey commune, said that in addition to a motorbike and several pieces of woodworking equipment, the L-shaped wooden building contained 10 beds, five sofas, three round tables and five armchairs – all of them made of luxury thnong – when it went up in flames.
“However, no one was injured or killed in the blaze,” Rattana said, adding that after interviews with the workers and hotel staff, police currently suspect an “electric malfunction” was to blame.
Stung Treng town police chief Chhouk Komol said the fire caused some $100,000 in damages but declined to comment on the provenance of the luxury timber, the transport of which is restricted.
“I did not know because I am not a Forestry Administration official,” he said
Cheang Tola, provincial Forestry Administration chief, said yesterday that he was unaware of the fire and the workshop, but noted that he had “never given licenses to the people to create a workshop for making the furniture”.