PETALING JAYA, Nov 21 — “I heard a loud explosion and felt the tremors before the fire spread and engulfed three stalls in an instant,” a witness of yesterday’s fire at Uptown Kota Damansara recounted today.
Motorcycle workshop worker Zulkifli Adnan, 21, whose workplace was just in front of the fire’s location, said he immediately sought help from people nearby to put out the fire and help ensure it would not spread to other stalls.
Nearby traders managed to secure and use up 12 fire extinguishers to try to put out the fire, but it continued to rage out of control, and within half an hour, 20 stalls had been burnt, and many items were lost.
“We could not use water to put out the fire as the pipe was too small, so we used whatever equipment we could find to fight the fire,” he told Bernama today.
Food trader Azhari Senandung, 30, said this was the first time a fire broke out in all the four years he had been selling there.
“My stall was slightly affected, but my workers managed to save my products from being consumed by the fire,” he said, adding his business is still affected as the area has been closed off temporarily for an investigation into the fire.
“We cannot conduct business, and management will discuss compensation later. So for now, we can only clean things to help with the clean up,” Azhari said as he mulled on doing some online business in the meantime.
Meanwhile, Petaling Jaya district police chief ACP Mohamad Fakhrudin Abdul Hamid urged traders affected by the fire to lodge reports immediately, and as of this afternoon, only one has done so.
He said Uptown Kota Damansara would be closed to the public until the Selangor Fire and Rescue Department’s forensics team completes their investigation.
Yesterday’s fire engulfed around 20 stalls as well as a gymnasium.