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Fire forces evacuation of Big W Highpoint

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01 Aug 2010
Two hundred and fifty customers and twenty staff were evacuated from the Big W store at Highpoint following a fire in the hosiery department.

Though the fire was relatively small, it created a considerable amount of thick, black smoke requiring staff to close the store and evacuate everyone to a safe location. Smoke curtains were lowered to prevent the smoke from entering the shopping centre while the air handling system for the Big W store was put into reverse to remove the smoke.

Commander Ken Brown from the MFB praised the excellent work done by the Big W staff who managed to get all their customers out of the store in less than seven minutes without injury or panic. Trading for the remainder of the centre was able to continue unimpeded due to the early activation of the smoke curtains.

The cause has been listed as suspicious and store video footage has been made available to the Police to assist in apprehending the youths believed responsible.

TIME: 14:56 hours
CALL No.: 0110

ATTENDING APPLIANCES:
PUMPERS: 3
RESCUE UNITS: 1

No. of FIREFIGHTERS: 14
OFFICER - IN - CHARGE: Commander Ken Brown
ORIGINATOR: MFB Communications Controller – Trevor Woodward

For more information please contact: MFB Media & Communications on 9665 4699 or media@mfb.vic.gov.au

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