Five thatched mini-bar shacks run by foreigners at one of Sihanoukville’s popular beaches went up in smoke on Thursday, and the German owner of one of the businesses was being sought on Friday, police said.
Seven fire trucks were dispatched to extinguish the fire on O’Tres beach, which poured smoke into the sky for a half an hour, as it was adjacent to the beach and spreading fast, Preah Sihanouk provincial police chief Chuon Narin said.
“The shacks were built with thatch roofs and bamboo and it was very windy. That was why the fire spread very fast,” he said.
The fire began when the German business owner started his generator, spilling gasoline that spread to the engine, sparking the blaze at about 3 p.m., Major General Narin said.
“Last night, a German owner fled and we are investigating to find him,” Mr. Narin said, adding that he did not know the German owner’s name.
Thy Tay, manager of the Seagarden bungalows on O’Tres beach, said the fire started at Elephant Garden, which was owned by a German national. Elephant Garden management could not be reached for comment.