Fire guts Mbale fuel station

Mbale residents help police fire brigade to put out fire from a burning truck. Photo by David Oduut.

MBALE–Police in Mbale district are investigating circumstances under which fire gutted a fuel station in Mbale this afternoon.

The 2:30pm fire which broke out at Net Gas Uganda Ltd fuel station located in Namanyonyi trading centre about three kilometers on Mbale-Soroti road destroyed property worth millions of shillings.

The raging fire burnt down three vehicles; Canter truck Reg. No UAT 888J and a Fuso Reg. No. ZE14360 as well as a trailer carrying maple stones Reg. No. UAZ 315Q. All the vehicles were parked at the fuel station.

Police fire brigade responded in time and managed to save a fuel tanker loaded with petrol that had also caught fire.

Mbale deputy RDC Pamela Watuwa speaks to journalists over the incident. Photo by David Oduut.

“The flames were so intense but the fire brigade team swang into action and managed the fire before it became uncontrollable ” Godwin Ochaki the Mbale district police commander who was also at the scene told PML Daily.

Ochaki said no causalities have been reported as both staff and other people were quickly evacuated.
He, however, said the cause of the fire is still unknown.

It also remains unclear if the fuel station had functional emergency fire response equipment.

Emma Mwabila, the fuel station manager, said the fire outbreak has left the station counting losses worth millions of shillings.

“This fire has plunged us into heavy losses but, I commend the police for the quick response and I am happy no life was lost,” Mwabila said.

Mbale residents look on as smoke billows from the fuel station. Photo by David Oduut.

Meanwhile, panic and fear engulfed residents of Namanyonyi and Busajja Bwankuba in Mbale district this after afternoon following a fire outbreak at a fuel station there.

Residents who operate and stay near the affected fuel station remained fearful, worrying that the fire could eventually resurface and harm them hours after the fire brigade force had put out the fire and vacated the area.

But Pamela Watuwa, the Mbale deputy Resident District Commissioner, who rushed to the scene was quick to allay such fears, stressing that the situation was under control.

Mbale station manager Emma Mwabila speaks to journalists. Photo by David Oduut.

She asked the fire brigade police and other responsible authorities to ensure that businesses or places dealing with highly flammable goods are equipped with functional emergency fire response equipment so as to fight small fires.
She also urged residents to be vigilant and report fire outbreaks instantly to avoid heavy losses.

Last month, fire again broke out from a fuel station in Manafwa district and destroyed property worth millions of shillings, including eight commercial houses.




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