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CK Building Fire / photo: tnp.sg

SCDF firefighters extinguish fire at CK Building after 16-hour battle

The fire at the CK Building along Tampines Street was so massive that it  took SCDF firefighters,  more than 16 hours to put out the fire.

The fire was reported to have started around noon on Wednesday, 17 August.

At 5:25 AM this morning, approaching dawn, SCDF posted on their Facebook that firefighters are still hard at work, attacking pockets of fire in the building using aerial monitors.

And at 8:47 AM today SCDF posted an update that the fire at CK Building has been extinguished at approximately 6am this morning with damping down operation still being done.

“Damping Down” is a term popularly used by SCDF firefighters to describe the application of water to wet burnt surfaces immediately after the fire is put out. This is to prevent any potential rekindle of fire from the hot burnt surfaces.

The firefighter who was injured yesterday has been discharged from hospital, and is on medical leave.

The SCDF has used five fire engines, two fire bikes, two red rhinos, and 12 support vehicles. Two ambulances has been dispatched earlier to the location.

At 6:49 PM yesterday SCDF posted that  Assistant Commissioner Ling Young Ern, the Operations Department Director, mentioned that the fire is now well under control.

Assistant Commissioner Ling said to the media that 110 officers and 27 emergency vehicles were deployed for the fire.

He added that this is the largest deployment of SCDF resources for a fire in an industrial estate this year and in which four crane-like aerial appliances were used for the first time.

At 7:53 pm. firefighters switched to fight the ‘deep seated fire’ from inside the C K Building. Several teams using breathing apparatus entered and moved cautiously through the smoky darkness.

SCDF explained that the rooms contain highly flammable goods such as paper products and aerosol cans, making it too hot and dangerous for firefighters to approach from within the building at first. There were also some small explosions sparked by some of the household aerosol cans inside the building.

At 9:08 pm. some of the firefighters who has been hard at work had their dinner and had a short rest before being redeployed into the building.

At 11:30 pm, last night the SCDF has expected that the fight will last through the morning and at 2:17 AM the firefighters were still mitigating the deep seated fire in the wee hours of the morning.

SCDF informed that the fire is "well under control," though it will need time to fully extinguish the embers inside the building.

There were no injuries reported except a firefighter sent to hospital earlier for heat exhaustion. He has been discharged with a clean bill of health.

The cause of fire is still under investigation, SCDF explained.

Liu Chang Dong, 44, a cleaner who works in the building next door said he discovered the fire. "I was cleaning the floor, when I saw that there was smoke. I quickly told our security guard, who called the fire department”.

"The fire alarm at the building that caught fire had also started ringing and the bosses were running out, looking frantic. There were people running out from the stairwell when I looked out. I didn't see any injured people," he said.

The Police said that 67 people were evacuated from the building due to the fire.