The blaze at the Gee Gee Complex on Bangaru Naicker Street is suspected to have originated from a shop selling computer spares and software following a short circuit and the rescued were those working at the shop, said police.
According to the Fire and Rescue Services Department, an alert about the fire was received at around 11.30 am following which fire personnel from Triplicane, Egmore and Teynampet rushed to the spot. Since the fire could not be controlled, additional strength had to be brought in. As many as 150 fire personnel and 11 fire tenders had to struggle for over two hours before the operation was called off around 3 pm, said Egmore fire station officer Vadivel.
A swift action group from the city police commissionerate was also pressed into service. Two sky lifters were used to rescue the staff members who managed to reach the fourth floor. About 35 police personnel were also deployed to regulate the crowd that thronged the spot, while traffic police diverted the vehicles. Seven ambulances were also kept ready for use in case of emergency.
According to Assistant Commissioner Bhaskar (Triplicane range), the fire started from a room where used spares had been dumped. Triplicane police have registered a case and further investigation is on.