Centuries old pagoda destroyed in midnight blaze

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A fire, believed to have been caused by a short-circuit, started at about 11:30pm on Saturday at Tinh Lau Pagoda, commonly referred to as Sai Pagoda, in Buoi Ward, Tay Ho District.

As reported by VietnamPlus newspaper, at the time of fire, witnesses at the scene had heard several crackling noises and detected a burning smell from the ancestral hall of the pagoda.

After being alerted, local police and authorities deployed firefighters and four firetrucks to the site.

Around 1:30 am, Saturday morning, the fire was successfully contained. And one hour later, the fire was declared to have been completely extinguished.

At 3 am, local authorities had already completed medical care and living arrangements for those living in the pagoda, as well as deployed a task force to watch for potential fires that could again erupt.

According to reports by Tay Ho District’s People’s Committee, at the time of the fire there were five people inside the pagoda, including the main abbot, two orphans, an elderly woman, and one guard. Fortunately, there were no injuries.

The ancestral hall, which was made entirely of wood, together with all worshipping objects and other possessions inside the hall, were severely damaged by the fire.

Relics in adjacent halls, however, were safe.

Further investigation is underway.

In 1996, Tinh Lau pagoda was awarded the title ‘National Cultural Heritage’. The pagoda is believed to be at least 600 years old. 

VNS

Source: VietNamNet

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