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Mar 17, 2002

Triumph Factory Ravaged By Fire

Copyright 2002, Roadracing World Publishing, Inc.<BR><BR>By Glenn LeSanto<BR><BR>Triumph ravaged by fire<BR><BR>The Triumph motorcycle factory at Hinckley in Leicestershire, England has been ravaged by a serious fire.<BR><BR>More than 100 firefighters were called to fight the blaze which broke out late on Friday night at the rear of the building.<BR><BR>Senior divisional officer Steve Vincent, of Leicestershire fire service, said "Through the tremendous efforts of the crews we've managed to save 50% of the factory.<BR><BR>"But unfortunately the stores have been lost. We also managed to save the office block and the paintshop."<BR><BR>Firefighters pumped water to the scene from the nearby Ashby canal.<BR><BR>Paul Botterill, from Leicestershire Fire Service, said the fire raged for five hours.<BR><BR>"At one stage there were 30 appliances at the scene, including communications vehicles, foam tenders and three aerial appliances," he said. Four fire crews are still at the scene and expect to continue damping down over the weekend.<BR><BR>Triumph's assembly area was destroyed in the fire and it is not yet known how severely this will affect production.<BR><BR>Many of the firm's 650 workers gathered at the factory gates to wait anxiously for news of the extent of the damage. It is understood staff have been told to turn up on Monday when they will hear from management.<BR><BR>One worker, who arrived to view the fire-ravaged factory, said "I'm devastated. It looks as though a crucial part of the site has been involved in the fire."<BR><BR>Tony Sperry, a motorcycle engineer and the East Midlands regional representative of the Motorcycle Action Group, said "To be honest, I'm still trying to take it in. Triumph is such an important name in the industry and it brought prestige to the area because it's a worldwide marque."<BR><BR>Triumph, originally founded in 1902 and revived during the 1990s by John Bloor, is currently the by far the largest British manufacturer of motorcycles.<BR><BR>The company recently announced it was considering moving production to the Far East.