Fire breaks out at arowana fish farm

Fire breaks out at arowana fish farm

SINGAPORE - Mr Eugene Ng was in the showroom of arowana breeding farm Glex Aquatics on Friday when he saw flames rising from a stretch of storage sheds metres away from him.

The 41-year-old, who is in charge of the farm's arowana showroom, immediately called the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) for help.

Undaunted by the plumes of smoke and acrid smell, he pulled out a hose and tried to extinguish the fire alone.

"It's not because I'm a hero. It's just natural to protect my property," said Mr Ng.

A few other workers joined him in the effort, but the flames spread to adjoining units at the farm in Sungei Tengah Road.

No one was injured, said the SCDF, which received Mr Ng's call at about 5.40pm.

The SCDF dispatched two fire engines, one Red Rhino, two fire bikes and a support vehicle to the scene. The fire was put out in 10 minutes with three water jets.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

The badly charred sheds, which are made of zinc and wood, housed styrofoam boxes of stock materials and live fish, as well as fibreglass tanks.

Maintenance worker Shahidul Islam, 33, who was among those who tried to put out the fire, said: "The smell of fibreglass tanks burning was everywhere."

The fire may have caused extensive damage, Mr Ng said.

When The Straits Times arrived at the farm on Friday, the area near the storage sheds was dimly lit.

Mr Ng said he could check on the arowana fish in the ponds only in the morning.

The fumes and intense heat from the fire could have agitated them, he added.

He is particularly worried about the prized albino arowana fish, which can go for upwards of $3,000 each.

"Hopefully, all is well in the morning and we can focus on rebuilding the storage areas," said Mr Ng.

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