A FIRE broke out at the three-storey Metropolitan Police Division 5 building in Sathorn Soi 8 at 4 a.m. this morning (Mar. 4) with the whole structure gutted in the fierce blaze but there were no casualties, Thai Rath newspaper said.
The building was engulfed in flames that shot up 10 metres high and there was the sound of explosions from time to time. Firemen rushed to the scene and used over 50 fire hoses to put out the raging fire and it was over an hour before it was extinguished.
Police had closed North Sathorn road for a kilometre from Narinthon intersection while firemen worked.
An inspection showed that there was no one in the building when the fire erupted but seven vehicles parked in front were gutted.
Bangkok Governor Chadchart Sittipunt, who came to the scene just as he was exercising before dawn, said policemen guarding the building told him that before the fire broke out there was a sound of explosion on the ground floor after which the piles of documents stored there quickly caught fire.
They sprayed fire extinguishers to try to put it out but failed to do so then called the Fire Department.
Later, Pol. Lt. Gen. Thiti Saengsawang, head of the Metropolitan Police Bureau, said the building was used to store administrative and official documents. It will take some time to check whether any documents of important cases have been destroyed.
He added that a committee has to be set up to investigate the cause of the fire while the structure has to be checked to see whether it would have to be demolished or not.
The fierce blaze at Metropolitan Police Division 5 building before dawn today, March 4, 2023. Photos top and below: Thai Rath, Front Page photo: Naewna