The Pool & Spa Warehouse retail outlet in Jersey Street, Hornsby was engulfed by fire at 6am on Sunday morning April 3, with approximately 50 firefighters battling the blaze. The pool shop fire spread to adjacent premises through the roofspace, including to the Community Church Hornsby and Studio Artes, a creative space for people with disabilities (which is asking for donations to help with the recovery). Up to 60 people were evacuated from nearby homes and businesses and four people were treated by paramedics after being affected by the smoke.
The blaze was brought under control by 8:30am.
A towering plume of black smoke was caused by burning plastics from the pool cleaners, filters and other equipment.
Fire & Rescue NSW Superintendent Greg Rankin said the fire was too intense for firefighters to get into the building. He said they took special precautions due to the fact that chlorine, acid and other chemicals were probably involved, although SPLASH! understands it was the plastics that caused the most serious problems. Any Hornsby residents who had not been evacuated were advised to stay inside and keep their doors and windows shut to avoid inhaling the fumes. Motorists were asked to avoid the area.
Specialist hazmat teams monitored the site checking both the smoke plume and the water run-off at the fire. The air quality was confirmed safe later in the day and the residents were allowed to return home.
Inspector Ron James from Fire & Rescue NSW says the building was unstable and had to be knocked down before the investigators could begin their search for the cause of the fire. The building’s alarm was triggered about one hour before the fire took hold, believed to be near the source of the blaze. SPLASH! understands the cause of the fire was electrical.
Inspector James said he spoke to the owners of the pool shop. “They’re quite devastated because it’s obviously the loss of their business,” he says.
The Hornsby store outlet is one of five retail outlets operated by Pool & Spa Warehouse.
Mitch H from the Hornsby store says the owners are looking to open up a new store within three or four weeks, but he doesn’t know if it’s going to be permanent or temporary at this stage, but it will be nearby. SPLASH! understands negotiations are already underway for a space in the same street.
SPLASH! wishes the owners and staff a quick return to full operation.
Studio Artes looking for help
Studio ARTES is a leading not-for-profit service provider offering programs that empower people living with disability by tapping into their creative potential. The Studio is a place where all people with any disability can participate in artistic, creative and recreational activites. All the activities at Studio ARTES are driven by the values of inclusion, equity and respect.
Studio ARTES is working toward the vision of an enriched society where all people living with disability are empowered through creativity and meaningful interaction.
The Studio offers high-quality, person-centered programs, led by professional artists and learning facilitators, with wholistic outcomes. Studio ARTES programs are led by professional artists and facilitators in Visual Art, Performing Arts, Learning and Life Skills.
Click here to donate to the Studio Artes fire recovery appeal.