Investigations begin into KNUST hostel fire

BY: Felix A. Baidoo / Daily Graphic / Ghana


Fire gutted the top floor of the Crystal Rose Hostel at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology on Thursday evening.

There were no casualties but many items such as television sets, fridges, a gas stove and cylinders belonging to the students were destroyed and it took fire personnel more than two-and-half hours to bring the fire under control.

Investigations have begun to establish the cause of the fire.

According to reports, the fire started around 5.30 pm on the third floor of the four-storey building.

No water

At the time of the incident, only a few students were occupying the hostel because majority of the students were on vacation. Fire personnel were said to have responded to a distress call but they ran short of water.

In an interview, the Deputy Chief Fire Officer (DCFO), Mr Philip Arhin-Mensah, attributed the inability of his personnel to quench the fire to lack of water in almost all water hydrants in Kumasi during the incident.

He explained that during the operation to bring the fire under control, almost all fire hydrants in the metropolis could not supply them with water, with the exception of two at the Kumasi Technical Institute (KTI) and the Driver Vehicle and Licensing Authority (DVLA).

Mr Arhin-Mensah, who is also the Ashanti Regional Commander of GNFS, said looking at the distance between the sources of water and the fire outbreak, they had no option than to depend on the two sources for all their water needs since the KNUST water hydrant had no water in it.

The Regional Commander said due to the magnitude of the fire, coupled with the water shortage, nothing could be salvaged from the fourth floor but the fire officers managed to evacuate all the occupants of the building.