Sprinklers call after Queenstown fire


Fire chiefs are calling on businesses to install sprinklers after a devastating fire at a Queenstown bar and restaurant.

Popular nightclub The World Bar and pizza restaurant Fat Badger’s below were gutted by a huge fire on Friday afternoon.

The fire is believed to have started in the deep fat fryer in the kitchen of the Shotover Street restaurant.

Forty-five firefighters battled to control the blaze and managed to extinguish it in the early evening.

But they could not prevent extensive damage to both premises.

“This fire was a very visible lesson in how quickly a fire can spread and how much damage can be done within a very short time,” area commander Keith McIntosh says.

“Sprinklers can often extinguish a fire when it first starts and are designed to control its spread, which limits the damage.”

The New Zealand Fire Service is encouraging the building owner to install sprinklers as part of the re-build.

McIntosh says people building new business premises or houses, particularly in rural areas, should also install home sprinkler systems to protect them from fire.

“In rural areas it can take 10-20 minutes for a fire appliance to arrive and in that time the home can be lost.”