x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Dubai firefighters battle five hours to contain perfume warehouse blaze

A fire in the Ras Al Khor Industrial Area destroys four warehouses.

Firefighters struggled to stop the blaze in Ras Al Khor Industrial Area, Dubai.
Firefighters struggled to stop the blaze in Ras Al Khor Industrial Area, Dubai.

DUBAI // Firefighters fought for more than five hours to extinguish a blaze that destroyed four warehouses this afternoon.

The fire in the Ras Al Khor Industrial Area started at about 1pm in a warehouse used to store perfumes. It quickly spread to the three other warehouses, which were also full of perfumes. All the warehouses were owned by Chemcrown International

More than a dozen fire engines rushed to the scene, and firefighters had to work hard to contain the blaze and prevent it from reaching a nearby carpentry workshop.

Police and rescue teams evacuated the neighbouring buildings and no injuries were reported.

Although the fire was brought under control within an hour, the flammable chemicals in the warehouses stretched the Civil Defence resources.

"The wind kept changing direction and every time we thought we had doused an area the wind breathed life back into the flames," said one fireman.

"We couldn't go very far into the warehouses as there was glass everywhere from the broken perfume bottles. The bottles were exploding from the intense heat."

The blaze finally looked like it would be out after almost four hours of continuous efforts to douse it with water and chemical foam, but the firemen ran into another obstacle – they almost ran out of water.

Extra water tankers had to be redeployed.

The cause of the fire is unknown and the Civil Defence has launched an investigation. Chemcrown International could not be reached for comment.

The blaze comes a week after a fire in Al Quoz 4 gutted a warehouse full of food products belonging to the supermarket next door.

malkhan@thenational.ae