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Jakarta Post

History of fires at Senen Market

  • News Desk

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta   /   Thu, January 19, 2017   /  03:57 pm
History of fires at Senen Market Firefighters try to extinguish flames at Blocks I and II of Senen Market in Central Jakarta on Thursday. As of Thursday afternoon, 57 fire trucks had been deployed to the scene. (Antara/Widodo S. Jusuf)

Central Jakarta’s legendary Senen Market, famous since the Dutch colonial era, has been razed multiple times. According to records compiled by news agency Antara, Senen Market first went up in flames in 1974. Since then, the large market has caught fire nine times.

Jan. 15, 1974

Fire razed Senen Market in 1974 during a major historical event called Malari, an acronym from “Malapetaka 15 Januari” or “Jan. 15 Tragedy”. University students were protesting against the visit of Japanese Prime Minister Tanaka Kakuei, at that time a symbol of foreign investment to Indonesia. Senen Market was one of the sites where riots broke out during the Malari protest.

Nov. 23, 1996

Fire razed 750 kiosks at Block IV and Block V of Senen Market.

Jan. 27, 2003

As many as 300 kiosks in Block IV and Block IVB were razed by fire.

March 23, 2009

Part of Senen Market close to the bus terminal was razed. That part of the market hosted many booksellers.

Traders save their goods from Block I and Block II at Senen Market in Central Jakarta on Thursday. Fire razed the two blocks, damaging more than 1,000 stalls.(Antara/Widodo S. Jusuf)

March 11, 2010

Fire razed 2,337 kiosks selling bags, shoes and clothes. The fire started between Block IV and Block V. City administration records show that the market suffered losses of Rp 8.5 billion (US$635,000), of which Rp 5 billion were traders’ losses and Rp 3.5 billion stemmed from damage to buildings.

April 25, 2014

By far the largest fire at Senen Market happened on this day. Fire raged for 20 hours and damaged 3,000 kiosks. The Indonesian Traditional Market Traders Association estimated the losses at Rp 100 billion. The cause of the fire was a short circuit on the second floor in Block III.

Nov. 15, 2016

Fire broke out around midnight and destroyed three kiosks.


Jan. 19, 2017

A fire occurred at Blocks I and II. According to the latest update from the Jakarta Disaster Mitigation Agency (BPBD) at 11 a.m. on Jan. 19, 1,021 kiosks were affected. As of 1:50 p.m. the fire was still razing.

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