Ararat unit destroyed by fire

Ararat - A Wilmot Street unit was destroyed by fire in Ararat on Wednesday night with Ararat detectives and Country Fire Authority fire investigators still to determine the cause of the blaze.

CFA District 16 operations officer Ian Morley said the Ararat Fire Brigade was called to the blaze in a block of units in Wilmot Street at 10.05pm on Wednesday, with 25 fire fighters taking about an hour to bring the blaze under control.

One female resident was at home, but was safely evacuated, while residents in adjoining units were also evacuated as a precaution while the brigade fought the fire.

"The unit received major structural damage, estimated at $100,000," Mr Morley said.

The roof was destroyed and roofing tiles collapsed in on the unit, while there was also extensive smoke and fire damage to the interior of the premises.

Fortunately a fire wall, which extended to the roof, prevented connecting units from being damaged.

All units had interconnected power and the power was isolated as a precaution while Powercor ascertained when it was safe to restore the power, which took around three hours.

Ararat Police, State Emergency Service and ambulance attended the fire.

"The SES provided lights for us and the police were very supportive, as was Ararat Rural City's recovery team, which assisted residents who required alternative accommodation or who were disadvantaged by the fire," Mr Morley said.

Mr Morley said the affected resident was uninjured and was relieved when fire fighters also safely retrieved her uninjured cat from the unit.

He said the CFA also appreciated that neighbours and local traffic kept their distance to allow firefighters to do their work.

"We would like to extend our thanks to all involved," Mr Morley said.

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