Casino's neon sign bursts into flames

NEON ALIGHT: Firefighters quickly extinguished a fire in a Skycity casino sign in Queenstown.
NEON ALIGHT: Firefighters quickly extinguished a fire in a Skycity casino sign in Queenstown.

All bets were off - briefly - yesterday when a neon Skycity casino sign burst into flames in Queenstown.

Volunteer firefighters were called to the entrance of Stratton House in Beach St when the sign burst into flames and a small fire started in the entrance porch roof shortly after noon.

Skycity staff stopped passers-by from entering the arcade, which leads to the casino, restaurants and stores in O'Connell's mall, while firefighters doused the light.

Fire Service investigator Stu Ide said a preliminary investigation established the fire appeared to be electrical.

The sign was in place for about eight years and a thorough examination would be done today, he said.

"It's possible it's a crack in the neon; maybe somebody has thrown something and it's been arcing. It appears to be electrical."

Ide plans to meet the Skycity maintenance manager today to inspect the light.

The Southland Times