(Note: 5th paragraph should read as ...told...)
SIBU, July 15 (Bernama) -- Fire destroyed 20 shops in Tukang Besi Road here this morning, making it the third blaze in the town in less than a month.
Firemen in four engines spent about two hours to contain the blaze which began about 11am, and prevented it from spreading to adjoining shops.
Among the shops destroyed were two medical laboratories, bookshop, motorcycle repair shop, goldsmith-cum/ammunitions shop, private medical clinic, restaurant and the branch offices of Chinese daily newspapers 'The International Times' and 'Berita Petang'.
According to a witness, Dr Isaali Wasli, who operated the 'Klinik Ali there over the last 24 years, he was treating some patients at the clinic when the fire broke out.
He told the patients to leave before the fire spread to his clinic, adding that the fire was believed to have started from one of the shops on the first floor of a row of buildings.
ESS ESS GR