The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) have said that outside resources have been brought into the city to provide normal coverage for other emergencies as the bulk of the city’s fire crews have been deployed to tackle at blaze at the Mandarin Palace restaurant in the city centre.
A statement from the NIFRS said that 52 fire fighting personnel are currently in attendance at the scene. There are no casualties being reported.
The NIFRS say they received a call alerting them to the incident at 12.53 today (March 11, 2015). The fire service reached the scene at 12.58 and a secind crew arrived on site at 13.03. By 2pm the number of appliances at the scene had reached eight, along with one aerial ladder and a command control unit.
The NIFRS quickly delared the blaze as a ‘major incident’. The area was cordoned off and residents in an adjoining flats complex were evacuated. The incident has also caused major traffic disruption throughout the city. Police are advising motorists to avoid the area.