Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Fire on Caldecott Hill

In Feb this year while holidaying in Harbin, China I got news that part of CCTV
new building in Beijing caught fire. It reminded me of vulnerabilitis of a television station to fire hazards.
I then remembered there were three major fires at Caldecott Hill over the years. The first was in August 1965 . It happened in the main TV Studio at Old Broadcasting House (this was the studio which PM Lee Kuan Yew held his press conference seven days earlier to announce break-away from Malaysia). Studio lights, cameras and accessories were destroyed . Fortunately back end equipment such as film projectors, telecine and programmes on films were intact. Emergency transmission was carried on at the Bukit Batok transmitting station. About quarter of million of dollars of equipment were destroyed. It remained a mystery how the blaze got started and it was a coincidence that the tv production that night was a campfire by boy scouts.
Less than a year later a new TV Complex was opened with four TV Studios. New regulations were introduced on the use of nake fire in TV studios production.
Till this day no fire happen again in television studios.
The second major fire occurred in the record library where vinyl discs were kept for radio programmes. A big a chunk of the record library was destroyed.

And on 25 Dec 2002 fire destroyed the street scene used for Chines drama productions at OBH. Fortunately in all the fires no life was lost.


wheregotfree said...

brings back a lot of memories

Anonymous said...

after the fire in 2002, we no longer get to see chinese period dramas.... no more good dramas like 豆腐街。。。