Police are investigating what sparked a blaze that has engulfed Asia's tallest wooden pagoda which transformed it into a smoldering pile of ash. A pagoda is a temple that is typically a tower that has many tiers.

And this one in China's south west was an absolutely beauty.

Credit: Asiawire

The blaze at the Lingguan Tower is believed to have started from a hall underneath the structure and, considering it's made almost entirely out of wood, it spread incredibly quickly up the 16 storeys. It certainly didn't help that it was a particularly windy day and that only fanned the flames more.

Not only was the tower burned to the ground, but the fire also claimed the Mianzhu Kowloon Temple and the Jiulong Temple as well.

Thankfully, there were no casualties or injuries from the flames.

But it did take firefighters roughly four hours to get it under control.

Burning Building

Credit: Asiawire

Sadly, the monastery at the centre of this devastating fire was a replica that was built during the Ming Dynasty (1368 to 1644 AD) under the reign of the Chongzhen Emperor. The buildings managed to survive through many centuries of social, political and environmental changes, but was destroyed in 2008 by a massive earthquake.

Known as the Sichuan earthquake, the 8.0 magnitude seismic event killed a whopping 87,587 people, injured 374,643, 18,392 were reported as missing and is the 21st deadliest quake in human history. Tremors were felt across not only China, but also in Hong Kong, Macau, Vietnam, Thailand, Taiwan, Mongolia, Bangladesh, Nepal, India, Pakistan and Russia.

A further five million people were left homeless after the quake, however other estimates put that number at around 11 million.

Monastery burning

Credit: Asiawire

The tower was rebuilt in 2010, however, according to the Daily Mail, construction workers have been at the site since the quake, trying to rebuild some of the more intricate aspects of the buildings.

Unfortunately, they'll have to start all over again now that everything in the 800 sqm vicinity has been burned to the ground.

Authorities will have to go in and assess the damage first and see if there are any leads to what sparked it. Once their investigation is completed, workers will have to clean up the debris at the site and then city officials can get onto the task of rebuilding the once famous building.

Whether it will be an exact replica of the Ming dynasty one or a new one is yet to be determined.

Sources: Daily Mail, RT, Metro

Stewart Perrie

Stewart Perrie is a Trending Journalist at LADbible. His first job was as a newsreader and journalist at the award winning Sydney radio station, Macquarie Radio. He was solely responsible for the content broadcast on multiple stations across Australia when the MH17, Germanwings and AirAsia disasters unfolded. Stewart has covered the conflict in Syria for LADbible, interviewing a doctor on the front line, and has contributed to the hugely successful UOKM8 campaign.

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