About P1 million worth of products made of rubber and leather went up in smoke when a fire hit the storage room of the Unison Shoe Emporium at the third floor of the Tai Guan building, at Luzuriaga Street in Bacolod City, yesterday.
Deputy fire marshal, Insp. Publio Ploteña of the City Bureau of Fire and Protection yesterday said the fire, that was electrical in nature, started at the third floor of the building, above the store owned by Eduardo Khia, at about 11:30 a.m.
Ploteña said they received a call at about 11:35 a.m. and were able to put out the fire, that reached first alarm status at about 12:35 p.m. No casualties or injuries were reported.
He said they found no evidences that it was due to arson, and they are still investigating its caus.
Five fire trucks from the BFP were dispatched to the area, and were assisted by those of the Amity and Filipino-Chinese Chamber of Commerce, records show.
Vincent Rodriguez, 39, a buyer of receipts and jewelry near the store, said a sales girl, whose name was not disclosed, asked for help when she saw an electrical spark at the stock room of the store.
Rodriguez said they went to the room but were not able to put out the spark that turned into a fire.
Other establishments near the shoe shop were ordered to temporarily close, and vehicles passing the streets of Araneta and Luzuriaga were re-routed to facilitate passage of fire fighting units, Ploteña said.
He admitted that they had a hard time putting out the fire because of the smoke from burning leather and rubber products.
The fire did not reach the nearby rooms as there were firewalls between them.
Ploteña said the old building is not equipped with sprinklers to help suppress the fire as they are not covered by the fire code because the area is small, Ploteña said.
Meanwhile, a commotion ensued while everyone was busy suppressing the fire, when the son of the owner of the shoe shop, whose name was not disclosed, almost hit one of the fire fighters with his car, but it was settled immediately, the fire fighter said.*SGG