Major fire guts sheds at Vallah vegetable market

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Amritsar
  • Updated: Jun 04, 2014 14:28 IST

Firefighters try

A major fire that gutted sheds of huge dimension at Vallah vegetable market on Tuesday afternoon exposed inefficiency of the fire department of the Amritsar municipal corporation, which had to borrow fire tenders from neighbouring districts.

ing to put out the fire at Vallah vegetable market, huge clouds of smoke emanating from the vegetable market in Amritsar on Tuesday.

It took almost two hours to nine fire tenders to put out the fire, which broke out around 1.20 pm.

The reason behind the fire is yet to be ascertained. However,no casualty has been reported so far.

The conflagration that lasted for two hours gutted sheds at the vegetable market— at least three of which were of huge in dimension.

The firefighters struggled to contain the flames that were fanned by incessant wind. In addition fire tenders had to be called from neighbouring districts.

“All seven fire tenders were pressed into action as soon as the fire was brought to our notice,” said fire officer Sadiq Masih, adding a couple of fire tenders had to be called from airport and Khanna Paper Mills.

He maintained that fighting the fire at Vallah ve getable market was challenging as it involved negotiating with chaotic city traffic to reach the destination, which was nearly 10km away from the fire station.

Meanwhile,deputy commissioner Ravi Bhagat ordered an inquiry into the fire outbreak and directed the officials concerned to submit a report about the damage caused by the fire.

Bhagat said considering the enormity of the situation, fire tenders were called from Jalandhar, Gurdaspur and Kartarpur as well.

“It was an enormous fire, but the reason for its outbreak is yet to be ascertained. However, no casualty has been reported so far. I have ordered an SDM level inquiry, besides seeking a report on the damages suffered from the officials concerned,” he said.

He added that besides the distance traversed by the fire tenders, the wind proved to be a major challenge in battling the immense conflagration.

“As soon as the fire tenders put out some of the flames, these were again fanned by the wind. The plastic containers and bags in which the vegetables were stored in these sheds too added fuel to the fire,” he said.

“On top of that a number of gas cylinders were stashed inside these sheds as there is a canteen being run for labourers. The situation could have turned worse, had these cylinders caught fire, but by God’s grace nothing of the sort happened,” said the DC.

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