Forensic teams investigating the cause of last week’s Lough Ree Sub Aqua Club fire are focusing their enquiries on a van, the Leader can reveal.
In a development that all but rules out the prospect of foul play, specialists carried out a detailed examination of the scene on Monday afternoon in an attempt to determine what started the blaze.
Frank Casey, chairman of the club, said events of last week were likely to become clearer over the coming days.
“There are forensic people coming down today (Monday),” he confirmed. “At this stage it looks like it was an electrical fault in the van.”
A member of the famed club for the past 18 years, Mr Casey told of how the carnage left by last Monday week’s fire was having on the overall salvage operation.
“For insurance purposes the building itself can’t be entered while the assessors are looking at what is damaged,” he said, revealing also the “exhaustive” task now facing club members in identifying what items are still missing.
Longford Co Cllr Mark Casey, who lives close by, admitted large swathes of highly specialised apparatus would inevitably have to be discarded.
“There is equipment that will simply have to be dumped. Anything that was exposed to the heat is probably ruined. Things like air bottles and jackets, you just can’t take chances on important life saving equipment like that,” he said.
Much, over the coming days and weeks ahead, will depend on precisely what items can be salvaged as club chiefs look at restoring the unit to full operational capabilities as soon as possible.