The Korea Herald

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227 shops damaged in fire at traditional market

By Yoon Min-sik

Published : Jan. 23, 2024 - 13:55

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A fire broke out at a traditional market in Seocheon-gun, South Chungcheong Province at around 11:08 p.m. on Monday. (Chungnam Fire Service Headquarter) A fire broke out at a traditional market in Seocheon-gun, South Chungcheong Province at around 11:08 p.m. on Monday. (Chungnam Fire Service Headquarter)

A fire that broke out late Monday at a traditional market in South Chungcheong Province left 227 shops damaged with no casualty reported, South Korean fire authorities said Tuesday.

Officials believe the flames broke out at around 11:08 p.m. in the seafood section of a market in Seocheon-gun, a town on the western coast of the peninsula which is some 165 kilometers south of Seoul. It took some 361 firemen a little over two hours to extinguish the fire that triggered a level 2 emergency response -- the second highest and requiring response from multiple fire stations.

The shops had been unoccupied at the time, but 227 of them were damaged. Officials plan to investigate the cause of the fire and the extent of the damage it caused.

Seocheon-gun Office sent an emergency text message at around 11:59 p.m. to residents, warning them of the poisonous gas around the market and urging them to evacuate the adjacent area.

Upon receiving the report of the fire, President Yoon Suk Yeol instructed the heads of the Ministry of the Interior and Safety and the National Fire Agency to "mobilize all the personnel and equipment to put out the fire" while stressing the safety of the fire rescue workers, the presidential office said Tuesday in a briefing.