Huge fire behind Frankton’s Five Mile contained, one injured

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Fire crews have now contained a huge blaze at a car dealership in Frankton.

The fire engulfed the main building of the new Ford dealership, Macaulay Motors, in Grant Road, Five Mile.

A St John spokesperson said one person has been injured and taken by ambulance to hospital with moderate burn injuries. Emergency services were alerted to a fire in the workshop at 9.43am.

A Fire and Emergency NZ spokeswoman said the fire was “well involved” when fire crews from Queenstown, Frankton, Arrowtown and Invercargill responded.

Thick black smoke was visible over much of Frankton.

But by 10.20am it had been brought under control, and crews are now in salvage mode and dampening down the area, she said. Firefighters were still hosing water into the building’s roof.

Eyewitness James Castle, who works in the Allied Concrete yard nearby, said: “[I] saw the black smoke start and saw that the roof was on fire.

“It took at least 10 before fire services arrived and there were a few loud bangs of something exploding inside and then it calmed down once the services got the water on.

[It was] pretty quick big black smoke in two minutes maybe if not less.”

Senior station officer Michael Ide says a “huge” amount of resources, including 30 firefighters, were sent to battle the fire. It made more dangerous due to the presence of diesel, petrol, acetylene at the dealership.

There were six vehicles, including some on hoists, in the building, which is less than a year old.

It was clear staff had been working on some of the vehicles this morning, but whether that was connected to the cause of the blaze was not yet known.

Ide says the person injured was a staff member at the dealership.

 

An Airways spokeswoman said the building was on non-airport land to the north of the runway, but flights to and from Queenstown Airport were not affected by the fire.