The house which caught fire | Photo: Biju V
Varkala: Preliminary investigation suggests that the fire accident that killed five in Ayanthi could have been started by the fire that spread from the bike. According to the CCTV footage examined by the police, fire is first seen in the bike kept on the porch of the house. The bike’s tank can be seen exploding and fire then spreads from there.
These visuals were retrieved while scanning through the footage of CCTV installed in the neighbouring house. The fire broke out at 1.46 am. It spread to the side of the house after five minutes. Then with a small explosion, the fire spread into the house. The rescue operation started only 25 minutes after this.
The fire spread from the ground floor to the first floor. There was a holder above the place where the bikes were kept on the porch. It is doubted that the spark from it spread to the bike. The hard disk of the CCTV installed in the house was destroyed in the fire. They have been sent to the forensic lab along with the mobile phones found from the house to recover the visual evidence.
No person was seen in the CCTV footage, so the police have ruled out the possibility of sabotage. Police sources also revealed that Prathapan and his family had a sound financial background and did not have any liabilities and that they maintained good relations with the neighbours.
The cause of the accident has not been confirmed yet. An expert team under Deputy Chief of Electrical Inspectorate Rafiyudheen arrived at the house and conducted a detailed inspection. They concluded that the fire could have started from the car porch or the hall.
The team headed by the Head of the Forensic Department of Medical College in Parippally, Dr Balram also inspected the house.