20 Nov 2012

Fire destroys Flosse's Tahiti residence

4:11 pm on 20 November 2012

A huge fire has destroyed the home of French Polynesia's former president, Gaston Flosse.

The cause of the fire is not known but witness reports say there appeared to have been an explosion, possibly under the house.

The residence above Pirae was engulfed in flames, with thick smoke being seen from far away.

Firefighters were reportedly powerless because none of the hydrants nearby was working.

Later, they managed to work a pump to get water out of a swimming pool but it was too late to save the house.

At the time of the fire, Gaston Flosse was in New Zealand.