A fire broke out at the six-storeyed building of Paragon footwear godown at Chittoor road in Kochi, sending plumes of smoke into the air. The godown caught fire by 11.30 am on Wednesday. As per the primary reports from fire and rescue officials, no persons have been injured in the incident.
The fire and rescue officials are finding it challenging to put out the fire, which broke out in the heart of the city. The building is located in Kalthiparambil road near Ernakulam South Railway station. Though the fire has not been spread to nearby buildings, the fire and rescue officials say there are chances that the fire might spread if it not doused soon. The fire is so massive that the smoke being emitted into the sky can be seen from across in the city.
The aluminium sheets, which covered three levels of the building, as well as rubber raw materials in the godown have apparently proven a challenge to the fire and rescue personnel to douse the fire.
According to an employee, who spoke to the media, the fire started at the display unit on the first floor. "All 28 employees got out at the right time. There was a slight delay in the fire force reaching the spot," he said.
All agencies in the district that are well-equipped to handle fire and rescue situations have been called for help. According to reports, more rescue vehicles from other districts have been called to the area.
Panic has gripped Kochi as the location is crowded with many buildings, including residential flats and other commercial buildings. The officials are at the top of a residential flat, near the Paragon footwear godown building. The residents of the flat nearby have been asked to move out of the area.
District Collector K Mohammed Y Safirulla has reached the spot and is currently monitoring the rescue works. The bystanders gathered at the spot have been evacuated from the spot. According to media reports, residents are also facing breathing difficulties in the areas.
This is a developing story