Firefighters bring in water to battle blaze as building's hydrants fail

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 04 September, 2014, 3:51am
UPDATED : Thursday, 04 September, 2014, 3:51am

Firefighters had to use hoses up to 700 metres long to draw water as they fought a blaze in a flat at a public housing estate in Tin Shui Wai yesterday.

There was not enough pressure in the hydrant system at the Tin Yiu Estate, the Fire Services Department said.

More than 70 firefighters took more than two-and-a-half hours to put out the blaze that severely damaged the flat. No one required hospital treatment.

It was the second fire at a public estate in a week. And that followed a blaze that killed a woman and her three young children in Kwun Tong last week.

No one was home at the 24th-floor flat in the 34-storey Yiu Yat House when yesterday's blaze broke out at about 10.20am, causing more than 360 residents to be evacuated. Thirty of them were led to the roof.

Firefighters found inadequate pressure when they tried to get water from hydrants in the 24th-floor corridor and on the ground level, outside the building.

"Firemen had to lay hoses up to 700 metres to get water from a fire hydrant on the pavement outside the estate," a fire department spokesman said.

The department said it was investigating why there was not enough water pressure in the estate's hydrant system.

The spokesman said firefighters trained two water jets on the burning flat while three teams of firefighters broke into flats on the 24th floor to ensure no one was trapped inside.

The flames were put out shortly before 1pm.