Fire in zoo enclosure in Chester

15/12/2018 - 11:30

Caughall Road, Chester

A total of 15 fire engines attended at the incident's height including engines from North Wales and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service. The aerial ladder and supporting pump from Chester and Lymm also attended. The following appliances attended - one fire engine from Warrington, one from Chester, one from Widnes, one from Powey Lane, two from Ellesmere Port, one from Lymm, one from Tarporley, one from Runcron, one from Northwich, one from Nantwich, one from Middlewich and one from Winsford.


Fire in the Monsoon Forest Habitat at Chester Zoo Fire crews were called to a fire in a zoo enclosure at Chester Zoo, on Caughall Road, Chester.

The blaze was in the Monsoon Forest Habitat on the site, which is the UK’s largest zoo building. Due to the scale of the fire this was declared a major incident.  The zoo was immediately evacuated and a cordon was put in place.

Crews - wearing breathing apparatus and using main jets - brought the fire under control and the fire was extinguished.

Firefighters also helped the zoo keepers to move some of the animals away from the fire. They helped staff manually move some small reptiles such as turtles and tortoises, and helped staff to shut the gates behind the large mammals, such as gibbons and orangutans, after the zoo keepers had coaxed them into their outside habitats.

Firefighters remained at the scene overnight to dampen down and monitor the site.

One person has suffered minor smoke inhalation. There are no reports of any other injuries.

The zoo have confirmed that the critically endangered Sumatran orangutans and other mammals were all accounted for but have sadly confirmed that a number of insects, frogs, fish and small birds died as a result of the fire.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is ongoing but at this stage we believe that it was accidental.

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Last updated: Monday 17 December 2018

Related images

Fire in the Monsoon Forest Habitat at Chester Zoo