A blaze at a popular Phuket discotheque in Patong early Friday morning
reportedly killed four tourists and injured many others.
Police have yet to identify whether the dead two men and two women are Thais or
Phuket Wan online reported the fire that broke out at 3.55am at Tiger bar,
almost two hours after all bars and other venues in Patong are supposed to
close, killing at least four people. The injured were sent to Patong Hospital
Firefighters fought the flames for about an hour before finally
extinguishing the fire at the entertainment venue, which is in Katu district.
Forensic police were able to enter the fire scene a short time ago to check
the cause of the blaze. It is believed the bodies are still inside, the online
news site reported.
At Patong Hospital, authorities were unable to pinpoint precisely how many
were injured in the fire, but a nurse did say that one man was critically
burned and in danger. Four of those injured were French. All but two survivors
were treated and released.
Phuket Wan added that Patong is currently in the middle of an election
campaign for mayor, with the incumbent, Pian Keesin, standing again and hoping
to win on September 2.
Meanwhile Kanyaporn Khanthong, told reporters that she and her friends were
in the crowded discotheque at about 2.30am when somebody yelled out "fire".
"However, nobody heeded the warning and continued enjoying the music and
drinks. Shortly after that smoke was seen in the venue. Then, the ceiling bulbs
fell to the ground," she said.
She ran and tried to leave the premises but found herself stuck at the exit
because of the crowds. "I was helped by foreign tourists and managed to
escape," said Kanyaporn who was injured in the fire.
Phuket Wan quoted the manager of the Tiger Discotheque, Tamrongsak Boonsak,
as saying the fire broke out about 2am.
"People heard two bangs and it was originally thought that these came from
further down Soi Bangla. We will do what we can to help those who have been
injured and to help the families of those who have died."
He estimated damage at Bt100 million (S$3 million) and said that
investigating police would have full cooperation.
Fire breaks out at the Tiger Pub on Patong beach, in Phuket province, south of
Bangkok August 17, 2012.
Rescue workers carry the body of an unidentified tourist who was killed after a
fire accident at the Tiger Pub on Patong beach, in Phuket province
An unidentified French tourist who was injured in the Tiger Pub fire accident
receives treatment at a hospital in Phuket province, south of Bangkok August
"The four dead bodies were burnt beyond recognition. We cannot identify even
Police kept back a crowd of onlookers as ambulances arrived to collect the
casualties, according to local media.
"It's totally destroyed on the second floor where the fire broke out," said a
provincial official at the scene.
Concerns about fire safety at Thai nightclubs were highlighted by a massive
blaze at a disco in the capital Bangkok in 2009 that left more than 60 people
dead, including foreigners, as people celebrated the new year. [Pictured here
is a beach in Phuket.]
In that incident hundreds of party-goers were inside the Santika Club
(pictured here) when it was set ablaze by pyrotechnics during a performance by
a rock band
Three Singaporeans, one Japanese and a Myanmar national were among the dead,
while scores of foreigners including some from Australia, France and Britain