Anambra State Fire Service says it averted the late Tuesday night fire incident that destroyed goods worth millions of Naira from spreading to other shops in Awka.
Mr Martin Agbili, state Director of the Service told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday that the incident consumed all the fabrics, machines and working tools in the shop but no life was lost.
Agbili said that the cause of the fire outbreak was yet unknown, as no trace to the cause was detected at the time of fighting the incident and the owner was not available to give a clue.
“On arrival at the scene, lots of damage have been done in the shop and the owner was not around to give details of what happened,’’ he said.
Miss Cynthia Nwosu, an eye witness and a neighbor to the shop gutted by fire, told NAN that the incident occurred when electricity was restored.
“Mr Ade Mohammad is owner of the Ade Fabrics shop and had closed for the day before the restoration of electricity that led to the incident.
“Immediately EEDC restored the electricity, something busted inside the shop and there was smoke. I put out a call to Mohammed who rushed to the scene.
“On arrival, he broke the window to enter the shop, but the flame was too much, so we used sand, detergent and water to put it off but we were overwhelmed by the fire.
“Another neighbor then put a call across to the fire service officer, whose timely intervention saved the fire from entering into nearby shops,’’ she said.
Nwosu noted that Mohammed had lost property worth millions of Naira because the fabrics and the industrial machines he used for his business were many.
She alleged that electric surge must have been the cause of the fire outbreak as it happened when electricity was restored with a sound from inside the shop.
Another neighbour, Mrs Chiamaka.Ikejiofor, the owner of an electronic shop under the building, said she heard loud voices and on coming out, she saw that her neighbour’s shop was being destroyed by fire.
Ikejiofor thanked God that no life was lost and appealed to EEDC to install electric gadgets that would control power before distributing it, as the cause of the inferno must have been overpowered surge.
Mr Tony Ibe, one of the sympathizers advised electricity consumers to always be careful in handling electrical appliances.
“If electricity users unplug electric appliances, not in use, such incident will be averted,’’ he said.
Mohammed, who could not quantify the cost of what was lost, said that he used a generator set to carry out his business and switched it off at the end of the business day and as such could not link the fire outbreak to an electrical fault.
He thanked God that no life was lost and expressed happiness over the quick intervention of the firefighters.