DISASTER was averted in Namibia’s main port at Walvis Bay, which serves as the logistics hub of choice for landlocked countries in the Southern African Development Community, when the local Fire Brigade extinguished a fire in a factory warehouse situated in the fishing harbour.
No one was killed or injured during the incident and no damage to key infrastructure such as the main port or dry port facilities was reported.
The broke out in the vehicle shed of Pereira Fishing but was quickly extinguished because of the lightning quick reaction of the Walvis Bay Fire Brigade on Thursday evening.
According to Dennis Basson, the Chief of the Walvis Bay Fire Brigade, the fire is believed to have started when a short circuit occurred on the battery cables of a forklift that was parked inside the big warehouse in which the fishing company’s vehicles are stored when not being driven.
“There was a lot of smoke coming out of the warehouse when we arrived on the scene. After donning their safety gear and breathing equipment my men found the forklift on fire inside,” Basson said.
The Fire Chief said only components in the engine compartment were burning and the firemen were able to quickly extinguish the flames.
“Things could have gone very differently if the fuel in the forklift’s tank exploded. There were several other vehicles such as trucks and more forklifts parked inside the vehicle shed and if the fuel exploded we would have had a lot of trouble,” he said.
Basson said only the forklift that burst out in flames sustained serious damage and that none of the other vehicles or the roof beams of the warehouse were damaged.
Pereira Fishing is situated along Ben Amathila Avenue in Walvis Bay where all Namibia’s biggest fishing factories are concentrated.