Fire and Rescue NSW says a massive massive blaze that engulfed a vacant seven-storey building in central Sydney has now been “effectively contained”.
The seven-storey complex on Randle Street caught alight just after 4pm and its walls came crashing down onto the street below.
The massive fire created plumes of smoke that drifted over the central CBD and most nearby streets were shut down as the building started to collapse.
It is reported that more than 100 firefighters, from 20 fire trucks and multiple stations, continue to work to extinguish the blaze in two buildings.
NSW Fire and Rescue Commissioner Jeremy Fewtrell told the media:
“The fire is now effectively contained but it will be a substantial and very prolonged duration of firefighting to extinguish the fire completely.”
Fewtrell added that the building was made out of “well seasoned and dry timber” that caused the building to burn with such speed and intensity.
“The information we have at this stage was the buildings were vacant or unoccupied, whether they were under construction or about to have sort of demolition or work done.”
Hundreds of people were evacuated from the area near the building on Randle Street near Central Station.
A large exclusion zone remains in place to ensure the safety of emergency crews and the broader community.
Fire and Rescue NSW said in a statement:
“At this stage, it is believed both impacted buildings have been vacant. Firefighting operations are expected to continue throughout the night.
One firefighter who received a minor burn to his right arm is being treated by NSW Ambulance paramedics at the scene but will not require hospital treatment.
NSW Police and Fire and Rescue have warned people to stay away from the scene.