Speaking to The Phuket News on Monday (Oct 1), Kumron Lilert of Wichit Municipality’s Engineering Department said, “The Tribhum attraction did meet with all the required safety standards set out by municipal regulations.”
Mr Kumron’s comments come despite him also saying that the affected area of the Tribhum attraction, a 3D virtual adventure fantasy walkthrough, which was to officially open in November, burnt to the ground in just 20 minutes.
“The burnt section of the Tribhum attraction was 10 metres high. The fire started at the top of the structure and them moved down towards the ground. The whole of the affected structure was completely burnt in 20 minutes,” he said.
When The Phuket News reporter asked Mr Kumron what materials were used in the burnt out structure, he confirmed, “The material was fibreglass mixed with other materials. However, I am not yet sure what those other materials were. Right now I cannot make any conclusion.”
The Phuket News also asked Mr Kumron if he knew if paint had been used on the exterior of the structure for effect. To this he replied, “I don’t know.”
Asked if he thought paint on the exterior of the structure could possibly have led to the fire, he said, “I personally don’t think it led to the fire, but I have no idea.”
Mr Kumron then went on to say that the affected area of the Tribhum attraction would be completely sealed off to anyone other than those involved in the investigation for 30 days.
“Today (Oct 1) we are composing a letter ordering this area be out of bounds. This will come into affect tomorrow (Oct 2). All people other than those involved in the fire investigation will not be able to access this area for 30 days.
“This is because Wichit Municipality and police are conducting a thorough investigation into this incident. We must find out the true cause of the fire together with police,” Mr Kumron said.
From their initial investigation, police last Saturday said sparks coming from welding work still being carried out at the site caused the fire.
Officers attended the scene together with 20 fire engines and it took firefighters only 15 minutes to bring the blaze under control.
There were no reports of any injuries from the incident and evacuation procedures were used to remove customers from the main Cental Phuket Floresta building.
When asked whether reports of police’s initial investigation still stood, Capt Weerachat Srira from the Wichit Police, said, “I can’t tell you any information about this incident. I am working on the investigation now.”
Mr Kumron concluded by saying that the estimated cost of damage caused to the attraction was roughly in the region of B10 million.
Also speaking to The Phuket News on Monday, Central Phuket's Senior Vice President Wilaiporn Pitimanaaree said, “The fire at the Tribhum attraction area has now been blocked from public entry and Central Phuket is open as usual. Also Central Festival Phuket is open to the public as usual.
“I would like to thank the people who helped Central Phuket by giving notice of the fire,” she said.
“I cannot give much information about the incident as there is an ongoing investigation, and right now the Central board are working to help police with their investigation. I am sure the police will release more information about this incident soon,” she added.