A fire at a Taipei weapons factory killed four police officers yesterday. It is thought the officers died while trying to save hundreds of weapons from the advancing flames. The four were test-firing pistols when flames engulfed the tightly enclosed room they were in. Hundreds of service pistols brought from a Taipei county police station had been stacked in the room for testing as part of an island-wide project to record ballistic data. Five colleagues and two factory staff managed to flee the room, taking about 150 guns with them, before flames blocked the other four from leaving, witnesses said. Firemen later said they believed a short circuit in a fluorescent lamp or the electric socket it had been plugged into, sparked the blaze. The room had been lined with soundproofing insulation after the factory received noise complaints. 'The flames spread rapidly because the whole room was lined with this material,' a spokesman said. Interior Minister Yeh Chin-fong said that the victims had made the ultimate sacrifice while rushing to get the weapons out of the burning room. A comprehensive review of the factory as well as others like it around the island had been ordered, Ms Yeh said. National Police Administration Director-General Ting Yuan-chin, the island's top police official, visited survivors and relatives of the four victims yesterday.