Strategic response prevents major fire disaster at Kutupalong Rohingya Camp

UKHIA CORRESPONDENT

A potentially catastrophic fire was averted at the Kutupalong Rohingya camp in Ukhia, Cox’s Bazar, thanks to the prompt action of volunteers and residents. Their coordinated efforts saved three camps from a major disaster.

The fire broke out late on Friday night, April 26, at approximately 11:30 PM, originating from a shop within Kutupalong 2 West Rohingya camp. Located at a critical junction connecting camps 3, 6, and 2 West—home to nearly 15,000 residents—there was a high risk of the fire spreading quickly. Responding immediately, residents and a team of emergency volunteers dismantled about 15 to 20 homes around the burning shop, significantly reducing the fire’s intensity. The blaze was controlled within just 30 minutes, although two shops and two homes were destroyed.

Mohammad Shafiq, a young resident of 2 West camp, expressed his concerns: “Seeing the fire’s intensity, it seemed it would quickly spread to three camps. Thankfully, with the help of our volunteer brothers and Allah’s grace, we managed to control it. If we hadn’t dismantled the adjacent houses, the damage would have been much more severe.”

Shafiqul Islam, Station Officer at Ukhia Fire Service and Civil Defence, commented, “We were alerted to the fire, but fortunately, it was contained before our team arrived at the scene.”

This incident occurred just two days after a Rohingya community leader (Majhi) was murdered in the same camp. Residents suspect that the fire may have been deliberately set by miscreants exploiting the unrest following the murder.

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