Fire at arts centre

Electrical wiring sparked a fire in the auditorium of Colac’s arts centre.

ELECTRICAL wiring has sparked a fire in the auditorium of Colac’s arts centre.

Workers were installing a temporary extension to Colac Otway Performing Arts and Cultural Centre’s main auditorium stage when cinema staff noticed smoke and called Colac Fire Brigade.

Country Fire Authority district six duty officer Brian Brady said electrical wiring for the auditorium’s aisle lighting started a “small” carpet fire.

Colac Otway Shire Council infrastructure and services general manager Neil Allen said no members of the public were in the auditorium at the time of Friday’s fire, which he described as “smouldering”.

“Workers had been constructing a temporary extension to the COPACC stage, which required the removal of seats at the front of the auditorium,” Mr Allen said.

“The removal of seats caused a short circuit, which resulted in a cable overheating and igniting the carpet when the power was switched back on,” he said.

The council closed the auditorium to investigate the incident. The cinema re-opened at the weekend.

Police and Colac Fire Brigade also attended a gas leak at Skene Street, Colac, at 4.11pm, Saturday.

Sergeant Dan Willsmore of Colac police said the property’s owner was mowing the lawn when the gas leak occurred.

“It appears he might have whipper-snippered the pipe, which was quite old,” Sgt Willsmore said.

Meanwhile, police say a man and his dog were lucky to escape a car roll-over at Barongarook on Thursday night.

Colac’s Sergeant Janet Gleeson said the 37-year-old Gellibrand man was driving around a bend at Colac-Lavers Hill Road when he lost control of his car, hit a guard rail and flipped over.


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