UK: Medical refrigeration equipment manufacturer Labcold is now back to full fitness following the fire which struck the business last year.

Moving any business can be extremely disruptive. If you have manufacturing operations it can be a logistical nightmare. A fire, depending on its severity, can be even more disruptive and, for any business, potentially terminal. Faced with the prospect of both occurrences in the space of just a few months would send most business owners running to the psychiatrist’s couch. But that is what happened to Labcold.

Increasing business had prompted the company to move into the new premises in Chineham Park, Basingstoke, at the end of 2013 after many years at nearby Wade Road. Before relocation, the new premises were extensively refurbished and a large extension added on the back to increase warehouse space. The new location provided a vast increase in space for both the production and development areas, as well as more spacious offices.

Just six months later the fire which broke out at the company’s new premises brought five fire tenders racing to the scene. A total of 37 staff were evacuated safely before more than 40 firefighters tackled the flames.

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Five fire tenders attended the scene of the fire on June 17 last year

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The fire smoke-damaged around 70% of the building

The fire, which started in a laser cutter, ruined much of the previous refurbishment work. Destroying the development lab, it also smoke-damaged 70% of the building.

Amazingly, with disaster contingencies in place, the company was reopened for business as normal at 9am the following morning.

Locally-based Corporate Interior Design (UK), the company originally responsible for the refurbishment and extension fit-out, were called back in to put things right.

Offering a full design and space planning service, Corporate Interior Design managed the re-fit over an eight week period. This included the installation of a Daikin wall-mount FTXS25K heat pump. There are also four Mitsubishi Electric units PLA ZRP35BA heat pumps on the premises  and two Daikin Roundflow cassettes, which were part of the original refurbishment last year before the fire.

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The finished refurbishment