Mandarin Palace confirms accidental fire stemmed from tumble dryer in laundry room

The proprietors of the popular Mandarin Palace restaurant have confirmed a fire in the city centre on Monday ignited in a tumble dryer in its laundry room.

The main kitchen and restaurant was unaffected.

“Due to an accidental tumble dryer fire in the laundry room The Mandarin Palace will be closed today.

“The kitchen and restaurant remain unaffected and we will reopen very shortly,” the proprietors stated shortly before 5pm on Monday.

Over 60 firefighters and ten appliances were dispatched to the large fire in the Queen’s Court area in Derry city centre on Monday.

A section of the Strand Road and Lower Clarendon Street were both closed to traffic as emergency services dealt with the fire.

Following the incident, a Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) spokesperson said: “Over 60 firefighters are currently dealing with a large fire at a residential and commercial property in Lower Clarendon Street, Northland, Londonderry.

People in the area are advised to close windows and doors while the incident is ongoing.

“The call was received at 11.58am today (Monday, October 16, 2023). Ten Fire Appliances are in attendance including 2 from Crescent Link Fire Station and 3 from Northland Fire Station.

“Appliances from Newtownstewart, Maghera, Magherafelt and Dungiven Fire Stations, along with a Command Support Unit from Strabane, are also present.”

SDLP Foyle MLA Mark H Durkan said: “I’d like to thank the scores of firefighters who have spent hours working to extinguish this blaze in the heart of our city centre on Monday.

"This incident has caused significant disruption in our city, but I know that those present are doing all they can to get this fire under control.

“This will be a very concerning time for the residents who live in this building and the business owner and staff impacted.

"My thoughts are with them as we wait to see the damage that has been caused as a result of this fire.

“I would ask people in the area to work with the fire service and police until this fire is extinguished.

"We saw a major fire in this area a number of years ago which will no doubt have made this incident all the more difficult for those affected.

"I hope to see this operation concluded soon with minimal damage caused to the properties involved.”

Queen’s Court is an apartment complex above the Mandarin Place which was the scene of a major fire in 2015.