Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Fire ravages Battambang historic market

Fire ravages Battambang historic market

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Built in 1937 and considered a historical building, the market has 551 stalls and 210 other small sales locations. Fire Police Department

Fire ravages Battambang historic market

A massive fire tore through the Battambang Central Market (Phsar Nath) on Sunday night, damaging at least 33 stalls and severely affecting 44 more.

An electrical failure was attributed to the fire, which quickly spread to grocery stores and stalls selling dishes and clothes. No one was injured, provincial governor Pheng Sethy said.

The authorities are working to clean up the market, which is a heritage site. Sethy said the extent of the damage has not yet been assessed.

“The immediate task now is to clean up the market and restore the environment. We have worked to dismantle and transport the burnt waste from the market and establish security to prevent theft, which would lead to more losses for vendors,” he said.

Provincial deputy governor Soeum Bunrith, who has been assigned to estimate the impact of the fire, told The Post a joint commission has decided to remove all the stores located around the entrance of the market to restore the environment.

“The damaged goods have caused a bad smell, affecting the environment and public health, which needs to be cleaned immediately,” he said.

The commission urged the State-run energy utility to reconnect the electricity network in accordance with technical standards because in the past, the management of the electricity network in the market was privately owned.

The commission also called on the Battambang Water Supply Authority to study and reorganise the water supply network and set up fire hydrants in and around the market to prevent fires.

“Our group has cooperated with the Department of Land Management, Urban Planning and Construction and the Department of Culture and Fine Arts to study and assess the impact on the quality of construction of this market. This is in order to renovate in accordance with technical standards and style of French heritage buildings,” Bunrith said.

The market was built in 1937 and widely considered a historical building.

Bunrith said the market has 551 stalls and 210 other small sales locations. Firefighters used more than 40 trucks of water on the blaze, which reignited twice. The fire, which started around 5:30pm was finally extinguished at 3:30am.


  • Without shoes or a helmet, a young cyclist steals the show

    Pech Theara gripped the curved handlebars of his rusty old bike, planted his bare feet on its pedals and stormed as fast as he could towards the finish line. The odds were against him as the 13-year-old faced off against kids with nicer bikes at

  • Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville expressway on schedule

    The construction of the more than $1.9 billion Phnom Penh-Sihanoukville Expressway has not been delayed despite the Covid-19 pandemic, with more than 26 per cent of the project completed and expected to finish in about two years, according to Ministry of Public Works and Transport secretary of

  • Singapore group seeks $14M in damages from PPSP over ‘breach of contract’

    Singapore-based Asiatic Group (Holdings) Ltd is seeking a minimum of $14.4 million relief from Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX)-listed Phnom Penh Special Economic Zone Plc (PPSP) for allegedly breaching a power plant joint venture (JV) agreement. Asiatic Group’s wholly-owned Colben System Pte Ltd and 95 per

  • Over 110 garment factories close

    A government official said on November 22 that at least 110 garment factories had closed in the first nine months of the year and left more than 55,000 workers without jobs – but union leaders worry those numbers could be much higher. Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training undersecretary

  • Cambodia lauded for fight against Covid-19

    Cambodia has drawn global accolades for its handling of the Covid-19 pandemic, with a new report finding that the Kingdom has controlled the pandemic better than any other country in Asia. Dr Takeshi Kasai, director of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) Western Pacific region,

  • PM vows to protect Hun family

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has vowed to continue his fight against opposition politicians who he said intend to smash the Hun family. Without naming the politicians but apparently referring to former leaders of the Supreme Court-dissolved Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP), Hun Sen said there