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Tuesday, 23 April 2019 09:57 am

More smoke than fire for Wellington workers

Nov 12th, 2011 | By | Category: Front Page Layout, Latest News, News

Workers in the State Insurance Tower were evacuated today when smoke filled the 19th floor.

Seven fire-engines and 25 fire-fighters were despatched to the  multi-story building at 2.51pm.

Fire wardens directed people to evacuate, however the decision was made to allow seven disabled people between floors 24 and 25, to stay in the building.

John Mansford, the Senior Station Sergeant at Newtown Fire Station, said the air-conditioning had caught fire. Fire-fighters were working to establish where the fire had started.

The fire-fighters  in the building felt it was safe for the disabled occupants to stay where they were, said Mr Mansford.

Police came out from the Wellington Central Police Station across the road to direct cars around the scene. They reported good behaviour on the part of drivers.

The crowd waiting to return to work were calm. Hayley Cooper, 29, of Korokoro and Sameer Chhimma, 30, of Island Bay, said they had not been told what was happening.

They were not fearful for their safety and Hayley, a claims trainer, was most concerned about the things she had to leave inside during the evacuation.

The fire was under control by 3.30pm and people were allowed to re-enter the building at 3.40 pm.

Hayley Cooper and Sameer Chhima wait outside the Victoria St police station for the all-clear.



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