Fire disrupts services at a terminal in Kenya’s main airport

A general view of the departure terminals during a strike by Kenya Airway's workers at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi on March 6, 2019. - Hundreds of travellers were stranded at Nairobi's international airport as riot police were deployed and teargas fired to disperse striking workers. With flights grounded since midnight, passengers were advised not to come to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport -- East Africa's busiest according to the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) -- until further notice. (Photo by Yasuyoshi CHIBA / AFP) (Photo credit should read YASUYOSHI CHIBA/AFP/Getty Images)
Passengers walk at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport. FILE PHOTO: REUTERS/Thomas Mukoya

Kenya’s main airport, the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, was forced to close one of its terminals after a fire broke out at two of its check-inn counters.

The fire, caused by a baggage belt system malfunction, occurred at counters 7 and 8 at approximately 2344 HRS local time on Thursday, according to the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA).

The KAA confirmed that all passengers and staff at the terminal were safely evacuated and the fire contained by the airport’s fire department.

The KAA also confirmed that no one was injured in the incident.

Terminal 1C has since been temporarily closed and its flight operations moved to Terminal 1B.

The authority reassured passengers that it is doing all it can to ensure the terminal is reopened and operations resume normally.

The incident comes barely a week after the KAA commissioned two ultra-modern fire trucks at the airport in an attempt to revamp its airport rescue firefighting services.

The authority had announced that it had surpassed the regulatory requirements for fire cover requirements.

The authority sought to assure airlines and passengers that it was able to cope with any emergency likely to occur at the airport.