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High-voltage transformer catches fire at Mareterra construction site

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Laurent Schileo video screenshot

Monaco’s Fire Captain Masson provided us with a few details about the causes and consequences of the fire. 

“What happened?” “Where is it exactly?”… The “Aide et solidarité entre les résidents de Monaco” (Help and solidarity between Monaco residents) Facebook page has been awash with questions since a video was posted on Monday morning showing thick black smoke rising from the Mareterra building site.

But what might have caused the incident and what were the consequences? We contacted Captain Masson, who told us that the fire started in a transformer, inside a freight container, which supplies the yard. “The cause of the fire is unknown,” the Captain told Monaco Tribune. “It started this morning at around 11 a.m.”

A total of three fire engines and a ladder were deployed: the first two engines focused on the main blaze, the third conducted a reconnaissance and carbon dioxide detection operation. A total of 25 firefighters attended.

“The blaze itself was rapidly contained,” added Captain Masson in response to Monaco Tribune. “It spread along cables, however, and this took longer to overcome, as they were situated in a service duct.”

The construction site was shut down. It was later allowed to resume in part, except for the area near the burnt transformer, which is completely out of service. 

Fortunately, as Captain Masson reassured us, there were no casualties or victims of smoke inhalation.