Townsville Laun­dries gut­ted by blaze

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS - SA­MAN­THA HEALY

CHEM­I­CALS in­side a com­mer­cial laun­dry fu­elled an inferno that gut­ted the build­ing in min­utes last night.

Fire crews were called to Townsville Laun­dries at Gar­butt about 6.20pm, but the fire quickly took hold and threat­ened to ig­nite neigh­bour­ing busi­nesses.

Nearby res­i­dents were also warned to keep win­dows and doors closed due to the po­ten­tially toxic smoke.

Laun­dry em­ployee Wan­tha­nee McCloud said her part­ner had driven past her work­place when he saw flames.

“He rang me and I just had to come down,” she wept.

“I have worked here for about a year and fin­ished work about 4pm.

“It was a great place to work. It made me cry to see this. I can’t stop cry­ing.”

Mount Louisa res­i­dent San­dra Smith said she could see the flames from her home. “It’s sad to see a lo­cal busi­ness like this,” she said.

Six fire trucks and sev­eral po­lice cars and am­bu­lances were on the scene as the fire gut­ted the build­ing. At times the flames were so in­tense that win­dows blew out and blue and green- coloured flames shot from win­dows.

Emer­gency crews were still at the scene late last night, with fire­fight­ers keep­ing an eye on em­bers within the build­ing. Wool­cock St be­tween Pilk­ing­ton St and Dal­rym­ple Rd re­mained closed to traf­fic.

INFERNO: The flames spread through­out the build­ing as chem­i­cals ig­nited.

Pic­tures: FIONA HARD­ING

BRAVE BAT­TLE: Fire­fight­ers con­front a fierce blaze at Townsville Laun­dries in Gar­butt last night.

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