A church in Rockdale in Sydney’s south has caught fire at 9:45 p.m. on Sunday, prompting an overnight evacuation of residents as well as the nursing home in the area.
According to Yahoo News, emergency services said that the fire blaze at the church was at its height when they reached the spot on Sunday night. The cause of the fire is yet unknown. The investigators will inspect the remains of the Macedonian Orthodox Church of the Resurrection on Monday morning. The rescuers have evacuated the buildings and other filled areas to ensure no life or property damage is recorded. Several connecting roads have been blocked as a precaution post-accident.
Fire and Rescue NSW’s Superintendent Adam Dewberry said that almost 60 firefighters battled at the scene and fought with the fire at the church for hours. They eventually brought the situation under control on Fredrick Street. Orthodox Easter services were put to a halt because of the large flames destroying everything in and around the church, shocking the churchgoers. One of the church members said there was a possibility of a lit candle left as people celebrated Orthodox Easter at that moment.
The NSW Police released a statement on Sunday night informing the public that the church in Rockdale is on fire. Ther force mentioned the closure to traffic and diversions that occurred after the occurrence of the incident. Dewberry confirmed that about 60 people were asked to leave the nursing home nearby to make sure no lives are in danger if the flames spread. “The fire did escalate rather quickly on the first calls [to triple zero],” the superintendent said as quoted by the Sydney Morning Herald.
“There was some heat damage done to the windows [of the nursing home] that adjoin the church, and some of the church walls did collapse.”
At around 1:00 a.m., the nursing home residents were allowed to enter their rooms again.