By THE NATION
Officers from Pattaya Police Station were informed of the fire at Holiday Inn Hotel in Soi Buakhao, Nong Prue subdistrict in the Banglamung district at 4.30am. They rushed to the scene together with firefighters, disaster mitigation staff, rescue volunteers and a medical team from Muang Pattaya Hospital.
Officers and volunteers helped evacuate around 400 hotel guests and staff, including foreign tourists, children, elderly and disabled persons to safety, while firefighters spent 30 minutes using water cannons to subdue the blaze.
A hotel security guard said that he saw smoke coming from the balcony of a room on the front side of the building, and then the fire spread quickly due to strong winds.
A preliminary inspection by police officers said that the fire had occurred at the front part of the hotel while the central and rear parts were still intact. The cause of the fire will be further investigated while the damage was initially estimated at at least Bt1 million.