Harbour Rd fire at Chris Engineering
Harbour Rd fire at Chris Engineering Jacob Miley

I told the owner 'get down here, your shed is on fire'

UPDATE: AN ENGINEERING business will be out of action for some time after a fire broke out in its warehouse, gutting the office and leaving the owners with a massive clean-up.

Inside the office the floor is muddy, a combination of burnt-out tools, remnants of the roof and water that was used to dampen the blaze.

Emergency services were called to Chris Engineering on Harbour Rd around 9pm Wednesday night after reports of a fire.

Residents who live across the road from the Walker Complex heard loud bangs then saw smoke coming from the building.

One of the caretakers of the building, Dave Allan, was much closer and was in his shed directly behind Chris Engineering.

"First off I just heard the fire brigade and then it (the trucks) got pretty close and I heard bang and then I jumped out to see what was going on," he said.

"I just saw flashing lights."



Mr Allan called the business owner Chris Loke, who is currently out of the country on holidays and told him his building was on fire.

"I told him get down here, your shed is on fire," he said. "He said, 'I'm in Malaysia' and I said that's a long way to come."

Though Mr Allan didn't go into the burning shed, he said there was smoke everywhere.

When he went down to the shed to see what was happening, he told emergency services he was the caretaker and was able to assist them.

Police remained at the fire overnight.

On Thursday, they spent the morning going through the burnt remnants but quickly ruled out that the fire was suspicious.

Dave Allan was behind the warehouse working on his car when he heard sirens. He assisted the emergency services.
Dave Allan was behind the warehouse working on his car when he heard sirens. He assisted the emergency services. Jacob Miley


Fire investigations into the blaze revealed the fire might have been caused by an electrical fault and possibly related to old phone charges, Superintendent Steve dePinto said.

"There was a whole lot of electrical phone charges, and some other electrical equipment that had been in situ for a couple of years and hadn't been touched for that period of time and that was at the area of origin of fire.

"There was no sign of break-in," Supt dePinto said.

Power currently remains off at the site.

Earlier: THE office of Chris Engineering on Harbour Rd has been destroyed after a fire ripped through it on Wednesday night. 

It is believed cylinders exploded and equipment ruined that were just outside the office. 

Multiple fire crews, police and paramedics arrived on the scene. 

The fire is now out and the road is closed off between BP petrol station and Big Bear Supermarket. 

Police do not believe it is suspicious, but are treating it as a crime scene until forensics can investigate.

Police will remain at the scene overnight.

EARLIER 10.05pm:

A HARBOUR Road business has gone up in flames this evening as firefighters race to put it out. 

Residents from accross the road hears some loud bangs then saw smoke coming from the building. 

The fire which broke out at Chris Engineering appeared to have started in the office and burnt through to the main workshop. 

The blaze is now out and fire crews are beginning to investigate the blaze. 

There are several fire trucks on scene as well as police and paramedics. 

Harbour Rd is closed from BP petrol station and the Big Bear shopping complex.

It is understood the owner, who is currently in Malaysia, found out after he received a phone call. 

>> All the most up to date news in Mackay

Chris Engineering fire
Chris Engineering fire Jacob Miley

A profitable partnership

A profitable partnership

East Ballina Lions and Ballina Fair partner to support farmers

Keeping the heart beating

Keeping the heart beating

Bike ride to raise AED awareness

Skatefest going ahead

Skatefest going ahead

Fair Go Skatefest to run again this year

Local Partners