Almaty traders blame firefighters for inefficiency 16 сентября 2013, 17:27
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Traders of Almaty’s largest flea market whose good were damaged in the fire of September 13 and 14 are asking the market’s administration and the city authorities to restore their workplaces, a Tengrinews correspondent reports from the burned down market. The fire claimed no lives but badly damaged over 300 boutiques at a total area of 5400 square meters. According to the traders the fire started at Olzha section of the flea market because of welding works. “That is where the fire started from. The Administration of Olzha section should restore everything. Each person here has incurred damages worth billions of tenge. We are not blaming anyone specific, and we don’t think that the market was set afire deliberately. Mostly likely it was an accident and no one will give our money back”, one of the traders Zhaure Ashirova said. The traders told that after the fire started two fire engines arrived at first, but the water they brought was not enough to extinguish the fire. They are sure that if the city’s firefighting services acted more effectively they would have stopped the fire before it started spreading and the scale of the damages would have been very different. Administration of the market could not be reached for comments. The fire started at 1:33 p.m. on September 13 in Olzha section of the largest flea market of Almaty. Later the fire spilled into Ayan section and partially into Keremet and Alatau sections. The fire was taken under control and stopped from spreading at 7:59 p.m. the same day and completely extinguished only in the morning of the following day at 6:38 a.m. A total of 1518 firefighters, 142 fire engines and 2 helicopters were involved in the massive firefighting operation. By Roza Yesenkulova