2017 Firefighters save multi-million-dollar Para Hills West factory

Firefighters save multi-million-dollar Para Hills West factory

MFS image - 2017-05-16 Tiser Sam Wundke ORANA fire 1 webMetropolitan Fire Service (MFS) firefighters, supported by the Country Fire Service (CFS), have saved a multi-million-dollar factory that provides employment to South Australians with disability.

Lightning struck wooden pallets stored outdoors at the Para Hills West facility, leading to a significant fire that threatened the factory and a neighbouring property.

Neighbours called 000 (Triple Zero) to report the fire just after 7.30 pm last night and the fire rapidly engulfed an estimated 15,000 wooden pallets.

Image courtesy: Sam Wundke, The Advertiser

Firefighters from the newly relocated Salisbury MFS Command Fire Station were the first to arrive on scene and quickly called in additional firefighting crews.

Sixty MFS firefighters from 13 appliances, supported by CFS firefighters from nine appliances, contended with thick smoke, extreme radiant heat and flames up to 15 metres high.

Back to business – 75 factory employees return to work

Firefighters saved the multi-million-dollar factory, which was under direct threat from the fire, meaning up to 75 South Australians with disability can continue their employment at the facility.

Crews also saved a neighbouring home and ensured important belongings and medications were safely retrieved from the property during the blaze.

The MFS issued Advice messages to notify the public of smoke in the area and urged residents to stay indoors and close all doors and windows until the smoke had passed.

MFS Assistant Chief Fire Officer, Glenn Benham said the fire was brought under control within three hours.

“MFS and CFS firefighters worked together to protect the properties under threat while pulling apart piles of burning pallets to help with extinguishing the fire. They were supported by many agencies, including SAPOL, SA Ambulance Service (SAAS) and Salisbury Council.”MFS image - 2017-05-16 Tiser Sam Wundke ORANA fire 2 web

“The importance of a facility such as this to its employees cannot be underestimated. We’re pleased that there were no significant injuries and that after an initial clean-up, it will be business as usual for staff at the factory.”

It’s estimated the fire destroyed up to $300,000 worth of pallets and a prime mover from an adjoining property.

Teamwork between the MFS, CFS and supporting agencies saved an important employment facility in Adelaide’s north-east.

Image courtesy: Sam Wundke, The Advertiser

The MFS would like to thank management of the factory for providing equipment and information to help with battling the fire.