The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Fire Service has disclosed the primary cause of the devastating inferno that engulfed the two-storey Samsung headquarters in Wuse 2, Abuja.
The nightmare unfolded late Monday night and into the early hours of Tuesday, leaving the Samsung headquarters in ruins.
According to Mr. Ibrahim Tauheed, the FCT Fire Service spokesperson, the tragedy was the result of careless welding activities taking place near a pile of empty, combustible cartons within the facility.
While the blaze wreaked havoc, there were no casualties reported, but the two-storey building housing valuable Samsung products was utterly razed.
The prompt action of one Mrs. Ngozi, the owner of Mozini Spa, located behind Furniture House, played a crucial role in alerting the authorities.
She made a distress call to the Fire Service at 7:38 pm, which led to the Asokoro Fire Station being the first to reach the scene at 7:43 pm.
However, the firefighters encountered a hostile crowd of individuals who began pelting their fire truck with stones, posing a significant challenge.
To ensure the safety of the firefighters and their equipment, DSF Ahmed Katsina, the leader of the crew, directed the driver to take an alternate route to Ahmadu Bello Way and alerted the police control room.
The arrival of Nigeria Police personnel eventually led to the dispersal of the unruly crowd, allowing the firefighters to initiate their efforts.
Unfortunately, the delay caused the fire to intensify and spread throughout the building.
Despite the daunting circumstances, diligent efforts were made to prevent the flames from spreading to nearby structures and the adjacent filling station.
Many had feared the fire’s potential to engulf other buildings and the filling station, but with the combined efforts of multiple stations and agencies, this catastrophic scenario was averted.
The fierce blaze continued for over six long hours, from 7:38 pm on November 6th until 01:37 am on November 7th, before it was finally brought under control.
Notably, both the Federal Fire Service and FCT Fire Service maintained one station each on standby until the morning.
Engr. Zacchaeus Adebayo, the Acting Director of FCT Fire Service, closely monitored the operation from the beginning until the blaze was finally subdued.
He commended the firefighters for their unwavering commitment and pledged to enhance operational conditions promptly.
In this trying time, the unity and dedication of the firefighting teams and the support from various agencies played a crucial role in minimizing the extent of the disaster.