Around 25 thatched huts were gutted in a fire that broke out in Nanmangalam a little past midnight on Saturday. No one was injured in the incident.  

Construction workers, mostly from Bihar and West Bengal as well as a few from Tamil Nadu, were living in the huts at the worksite, on Nanmangalam-Nemilichery Road. Just past midnight on Saturday, the fire broke out in one of the huts and spread immediately, destroying all the huts.

“It was very hot and there was a breeze too, which helped the fire spread. All the huts were completely destroyed in less than 10 minutes,” said S. Minarul of Baharampur, West Bengal.

The workers said all the rice, pulses and vegetables as well as mobile phones, fans and lights and cash that had been in the houses were destroyed. They added that a private water tanker passing by was brought to the spot, but since they were unable to spray the water on the fire, it wasn’t of much use.

 A worker said that a fire tender only arrived an hour after the fire began. Fire service personnel at Tambaram said that since the worksite was at a remote spot, it had been difficult for them to reach it.

By the time they arrived, the damage was complete.

A block of apartments is coming up at the site, a worker said.

The private company building it had provided the thatched huts for the workers. The company’s representatives were not available for comment. However, staff at the worksite said alternative arrangements for accommodation were being made.

A staff member said all the huts had power supply, but that the workers used firewood to fuel their stoves. A spark from the wood could have caused the fire, he said.

 On Sunday, the workers temporarily moved into the flats under construction.

More In: Chennai | News