A blaze burned through Pondok Bambu, East Jakarta, on Tuesday afternoon, destroying 150 homes and workshops left vacant while their owners were out of town on mudik.
More than 30 fire trucks massed at the scene of the massive blaze, Paimin Napitupulu, head of Jakarta’s fire and disaster response agency, told the Antara news agency. It took firefighters three hours to extinguish the fire, which torched numerous workshops stocked with wood, paint thinners and chemicals.
Local residents said the fire started in a workshop, but Paimin told Antara it began in an empty house.
“Based on testimony of eye witnesses, the fire started in an empty house,” Paimin said. “A child saw the fire get bigger after possibly igniting paint thinner and furniture materials.”
A section of Pondok Bambu approximately one hectare in area was badly damaged in the fire, he said. The losses could total more than a billion rupiah.
Three people were being treated by the East Jakarta Red Cross after being injured in the blaze. There were no fatalities.