A fire station that went up in flames in Lanzhou, Gansu province, became a national laughing stock yesterday after an image of the aftermath of the accident went viral on the Internet.
Writer Liu Siyu uploaded the photo (see right) to his Sina Weibo profile along with the caption, “Have you ever seen a fire station that set itself on fire? The Lanzhou Fire Department Special Squadron has done it.”
In the picture, firemen appear to have just put out the fire, while a fire truck parked outside the station continues to smoulder. A section of the wall of the building is charred, all the way up to the sixth storey.
Later in the evening, the Lanzhou Public Security Bureau confirmed the incident in an announcement posted on its Sina Weibo account. The fire was started when welding sparks hit flammable material lying around in the garage, it said. The exterior of the building has since been fixed and the firemen put through extra fire safety training, the statement added.
The picture has been reposted some 70,000 times. It also attracted another 15,000 comments. One dead-pan remark left by a sarcastic commenter read, “They must have broken the world record for response time by a fire department.”
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