Glasgow Hydro blaze

By Sandy Guthrie10 June 2013

Special high reach apparatus was used to fight the fire at the Glasgow Hydro site. Picture courtesy

Special high reach apparatus was used to fight the fire at the Glasgow Hydro site. Picture courtesy of Scottish Fire & Rescue Service

Fire struck at a £125 million (€147 million) construction project in Glasgow, Scotland, last weekend, with 40 firefighters called to the 12,000-seater Glasgow Hydro national arena.

On arriving at the blaze on Saturday afternoon, June 8, the firefighters were met with a developing fire within the roof space of the 45m tall building which is currently under construction. The incident commander immediately requested additional special high reach appliances to attack the fire.

No one has been reported to have been injured as a result of the blaze.

The Hydro was due to open in September. It is said to be modelled on Greek and Roman amphitheatres, and its roof is a silver dome. It sits alongside the Scottish Exhibition & Conference Centre (SECC) and the Clyde Auditorium.

The SECC awarded the contract to build the Hydro to Lend Lease, which began work in February 2011. Lend Lease representatives were on site yesterday (Sunday) to start an assessment of the damage caused and a full structural assessment of the building.

SECC said it was advised by Lend Lease that a fire had broken out at the venue on Saturday 8 June at around 3.15pm. It said, “Strathclyde Fire & Rescue attended the fire and it was swiftly put out. We are grateful for their attendance and professionalism. We are also pleased to report that no one was hurt.”

It added that Lend Lease was assessing fire and water damage, remediation and programme implications in the week ahead and that it would advise the SECC once it had completed their work.

Group Commander John Rae from the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service, said, "The initial firefighting actions and tactical decision-making from the first attending crews prevented the fire from spreading far more rapidly than it did and thus limited the damage caused.

“Fires within the roof space of any building give major problems to firefighters, especially in terms of access, and this was a new building under construction with an unusual design."

Group Commander Rae added that the early introduction of the special high reach appliances to tackle the fire played a major part in limiting the effects of the blaze.

An investigation into the cause of the fire is underway by the Service’s Incident Research & Investigation Section in conjunction with Police Scotland, although there have been reports in the press of workers claiming that sparks from a welder’s torch may have been responsible.

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