The four-storeyed building at the busy Five Corner Junction in the city that caught fire on Wednesday morning was being used for commercial purposes flouting various fire safety norms.
G. Ramachandran, Station Officer, Coimbatore South, told The Hindu that the owner of the building Ponnusamy of North Coimbatore had not obtained No-Objection Certificate (NOC) from the Fire and Rescue Services for the structure.
He said that the building owner also did not follow various fire safety norms for the commercial building including fire extinguishers.
The Fire and Rescue Services does not have the authority to suo motu take action against the owner of the building, he said.
The building also lacked setback area and open space around the structure for fire safety purposes.
The fire was reported in the third floor of the four-storeyed building around 8.15 a.m. According to officials with Fire and Rescue Services, the building housed a bag shop on the ground floor and the remaining floors were used for stocking bags.
The Fire and Rescue Services received an alert about the fire at 8. 30 a.m. Two fire tenders from Coimbatore south fire station and one from Coimbatore north fire station were brought to the location to put out the fire. Around 20 fire brigades led by senior officials put out the fire, while the police managed the traffic to aid the works.
A short circuit in the third floor is believed to have caused the fire. The value of stocks damaged in the fire was yet to be estimated.
This is the second incidence of fire reported in the old part of the city with continuous buildings in a period of about two months. On October 2, a fire was reported in a jewellery showroom on Raja Street. After the incident, Fire and Rescue Services had said that Sumangali Jewellers had not obtained NOC from the Department.
After the incident, District Collector K. Rajamani had promised to conduct a meeting of officials from the Corporation, the Local Planning Authority, the Fire and Rescue Services and the Revenue Department to assess fire safety compliance and stability of buildings in the city.