Chennai Silks showroom in busy T. Nagar locality catches fire
Chennai, May 31 : A multi-storied textile showroom located in the busy T. Nagar locality here caught fire on Wednesday early morning.
Several fire tenders were pressed into fighting the blaze.
Massive plumes of smoke smothered the sky above Panagal Park in Chennai’s T Nagar, as firefighters battled a major fire in the building housing the Chennai Silks Showroom.
A large area of around 500m around the commercial building, stretching the length of Usman Road was engulfed in smoke, as the fire continued to burn over eight hours after it began.
According to the police, the fire at the Chennai Silks showroom was noticed around 5 a.m. and fire tenders were rushed to the spot.
At least 11 employees who were staying at the shop were rescued and no casualties were reported.
Thick smoke was emanating from several floors of the building.
The police have diverted the traffic around the area.
Fire personnel have been unable to enter the building, and have been dousing the fire from atop the centre of the T Nagar flyover, directly opposite the building. At around 1pm, they decided to break through a portion of the back of the building in order to gain better access to the fire.
While one fireman has been injured in the firefighting efforts, 11 persons who were in the canteen of the building were rescued earlier in the morning.
Officials say that the fire is suspected to have started as a result of a short circuit. They say that two floors of the building have been damaged. However, plumes of smoke could be seen rising from multiple floors of the building. The ground floor of the building has reportedly been on fire since the start of the fire at 4.30am.
15 fire tenders have been deployed and additional private water tankers have also been brought in to assist in the firefighting. Three skylifts have also been deployed.
Police officials said the damage can be assessed to the building only once the blaze is put out. However, material including jewellery and silk sarees worth several lakhs have reportedly been destroyed in the fire.
Chennai Collector V Anbuselvan has requested by-standers to not crowd the area and hamper rescue efforts. He also told reporters that shops near the spot have been ordered to remain shut.
Traffic diversions are in place at Usman Road in T Nagar. Electricity has also been switched off in the area as a precautionary measure.
Panagal park in T Nagar is the commercial hub of Chennai, with several saree and jewellery stores.