Hatfield Wonderbra shop fire could have engulfed shopping centre, say fire chiefs

PUBLISHED: 16:55 07 March 2014 | UPDATED: 16:55 07 March 2014

The Galleria

The Galleria

Archant

A fire in Hatfield's Wonderbra shop could potentially have burned the Galleria Shopping Centre down - but was thwarted by a sprinkler system.

Heat from the blaze activated the sprinkler, and it was quickly put out by firefighters.

Fire chiefs have lauded the system, which they say prevented disaster.

The drama unfolded at around 8pm last Friday.

Chief Fire Officer and Director of Community Protection Roy Wilsher said: “The sprinkler quickly stopped the fire spreading and as a result firefighters were able to put out the fire quickly, safely and, crucially, before it caused any damage to the rest of the centre.”

Richard Thake, Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said: “The cost of installing a sprinkler system is a fraction of the financial cost of a fire, which could ruin a small business.

“That’s just one of the reasons why we want to see them installed on a much more regular basis than they are now.”

The Galleria houses 80 designer outlet shops in 20,500 square metres of retail space alongside a multiplex cinema and several restaurants.

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