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By Staff Reporter : PNG Today

Australian team evacuates Olympic Village after fire, Kitty Chiller furious over silenced alarms

Australia's Olympic Chef de Mission Kitty Chiller is meeting with Olympic Village and IOC officials after a small fire at the team's accommodation revealed fire alarms had been silenced.

About 100 officials and athletes were briefly evacuated when the fire broke out in a car park rubbish bin.

It is believed the fire was caused by a cigarette. The Olympic Village is a non-smoking venue.

Chiller said the team received a certificate two days ago to say the building complied with fire standards.

"What we have subsequently found is that the fire alarms had been silenced while they were carrying out maintenance on the building next door to ours," she said.

"We hadn't been advised that the fire alarms were silenced, so how we found out was basically smoke in the corridors and stairwells.

"It's absolutely not satisfactory at all."

The Australian delegation, preparing to compete in the Games that start August 5 in Rio de Janeiro, went into the street until given the all clear.

No one was hurt and there was no serious damage.

Chiller said a lot of workers and contractors are smoking in the Village.

"There's a lot of rubbish around the place which a lot of countries have been talking about for the last few days, left from contractors, left from workers," Chiller said.

"There are a lot of smokers. This is my real issue. There are a lot of workers and contractors smoking in the village.

"The athletes' village is a non-smoking venue. There are a lot of people just walking around, smoking.

"We've asked for a reminder to go out to all staff and contractors that there is no smoking.

"What we think has happened is a cigarette has been thrown in a rubbish bin, or on rubbish, and that's what's started the fire."

Team spokesman Mike Tancred said "there was a lot of smoke and we had to evacuate. The firefighters came, it was controlled and we returned."

"There was no big drama," he added.

Mr Tancred did not know the cause of the fire.

The Australian team initially refused to move into its Village accommodations last weekend, citing shoddy conditions, including blocked toilets and dangerous wiring.

Workers have been fixing the defects all week and the Australian team chief, Kitty Chiller, has said the site is now in good shape.

Source: ABC News

Posted by Staff Reporter : PNG Today on 2:30 AM. Filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Share this Article

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