ADDIS ABABA – A fire in Kumame town of Afar region destroyed about 175 houses and shops on Monday afternoon, police say.
The blaze started around 05:00 p.m. at a private home and spread to other houses and a nearby marketplace.
Security officers in collaboration with residents were able to bring the fire under control “after hours-long effort”.
Flammable items such as gasoline in the shops coupled with the windy weather condition made containing the blaze difficult, according to the Semualo-gelabi District police.
The accident didn’t cause any fatality but destroyed 175 houses including 80 shops of the town with no fire brigade, Sgt. Adem Gebagede told the Ethiopian news agency.
The Police say faulty electrical wire may have caused the blaze. However, Sgt. Adem said investigation into the accident is still ongoing.
Administrator of the district, Hassen Hande said the efforts are now ongoing to help people affected by the disaster, calling others including the government to support the emergency response.