Thane: A major fire broke out at a chemical company in Dombivli’s Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) phase 2 area on Tuesday afternoon. MIDC fire officials said there were over 100 explosions in the premises of Metropolitan Eximchem Private Ltd.
Dattatrey Shelke, fire officer from MIDC fire station said, “We received a call at around 12.55 pm, after which we formed a team of fire personnel and rushed to the spot. Around 12 fire engines came from Kalyan, Dombivli and Palawa, Ambernath and Kalyan fire station and 20 private water tankers were also rushed to the spot.”
Fire officials said that the cause of fire is yet to be ascertained. “When we reached the spot and found that one 20,000 litres chemical tanker was in the company’s premises, we immediately evacuated people from the premises,” Shelke added.
“Over 100 chemical drums explosion took place during the fire. The black smoke spread across the entire area. Many people complained of breathing problem as the smoke spread after the fire raged.”
Manpada police appealed to locals and passerby not to use this route as the explosion took place. They took precautions and immediately closed the nearby 15 companies and evacuated many of the employees from there, said a fire officer.
Manpada police appealed to the people to stay at least 500 metres away from the spot. Many residential and commercials shop owners panicked when the explosions continuously happened. They evacuated their houses and shops quickly. One private school was also closed as the explosion took place. Police closed all the entry point of MIDC.
There were two sections in the company, one a storage and another for manufacturing of chemical. Over 300 employees were working at the storage unit when the fire happened. Before the fire spread, many workers managed to escape unhurt and alerted the fire department about the fire.
Fire officials said that at least 8-10 hours will be needed to douse the fire completely as chemicals were stored in large quantity in the company.
Kalyan Dombivli Municipal Commissioner Dr Vijay Suryawanshi and Thane collector Rajesh Narvekar visited the spot.