Warehouse collapses in blaze

SURVEYING DAMAGE: A fire investigator at the scene of the Maces Rd blaze this morning.
SURVEYING DAMAGE: A fire investigator at the scene of the Maces Rd blaze this morning.

A Christchurch industrial warehouse has been destroyed by fire despite firefighters spending all night at the scene.

Firefighters received multiple 111 calls to the Maces Rd building about 11.30pm last night, southern fire communications acting shift manager Rachel Butler said. 

Two fire engines went to the Bromley blaze, but upon arrival they found the building engulfed in flames so a further six engines were called.

Butler said the building collapsed, so the firefighters were unable to enter. Instead they had to fight the fire from outside and were there all night.

The section of industrial warehouse destroyed by the fire is leased by a company called Quality Laundry.

Other tenants in the building told The Press the company moved in recently because their old site was not big enough. Yesterday was their first full day operating.

There were no injuries and no-one was believed to be inside the building at the time of the fire.

Evolution Interiors, a furniture company, leases a section of the building next door. The company's owner, Karl Kitchingham, said he woke to numerous messages on his phone and after listening to reports on the radio thought it was his business that had gone up in smoke.

He rushed to the scene to discover the blaze was next door.

"In a horrible situation it's a pleasant surprise. It's obviously horrific what I see right next door. You don't wish that on anybody."

Kitchingham said about $10,000 worth of his stock suffered water damage in the blaze. He was insured and scheduled to move to another site later this month.

"I might have to talk to the new landlord to see if we can move a little earlier."

The fire was not being treated as suspicious, but fire investigators would attempt to determine the cause this morning.