The fire broke out at 5.30pm in the 14-storey building in Bu Tinah area in Sharjah. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Sharjah: Police on Wednesday were investigating what caused a fire that destroyed a 14-storey residential building in Sharjah on Tuesday afternoon.

An official at Sharjah Police told Gulf News that residents of the building have already given statements but it is too early to determine the cause.

The inferno destroyed apartments in the area and small flames could still be seen burning until 12.30am on Wednesday.

"The fire broke out at 5.30pm and civil defence personnel are trying to contain the blaze in the 14-storey building in Bu Tinah area," Waheed Al Sarkal, Director General of Sharjah Civil Defence, told Gulf News on Tuesday night.

Six people who suffered smoke inhalation have been moved to Kuwaiti Hospital, said Al Sarkal.

Police said 25 families have been affected by Tuesday's fire, and that the Red Crescent and the Ministry of Social Affairs have placed the families in hotels in Sharjah.

So far no casualties have been reported, he added. The fire started on the second floor and quickly spread. All 14 floors were completely ruined, said civil defence personnel.

The blaze, which could have been fuelled by cooking gas and other inflammable materials, quickly engulfed the entire building.

Civil Defence officials said strong winds had fanned it and helped to spread it to an adjacent building, but it was quickly brought under control by firefighters who came from Sharjah, Ajman and Dubai.

Anjad patrols cordoned off the area and blocked the main roads. They continued to block the roads leading to and from Al Buteina until early on Wednesday morning.

Al Arouba Street, from Al Rolla to Buteina area, continues to be closed until the Civil Defence completes the cooling process.

Major fires in the UAE in 2010

08 March 2010
A huge fire broke out in Industrial Area 13, Sharjah, destroying two warehouses and affecting 24 others.

08 April 2010
A large fire gutted three company premises and also spread to residential building in Industrial area 6 in Sharjah.

14 April 2010
A Pakistani driver was killed while eight others were severely burnt when an air-conditioner exploded and caught fire in their room in a poorly maintained workers' accommodation in Al Aweer.

16 April 2010
A massive fire broke out in Industrial Area 17 in Sharjah which gutted eight warehouses that contained tyres and perfumes.

29 April 2010
A large fire erupted at a warehouse containing plastic materials in Industrial Area 6, Sharjah. The fire was put out within half an hour and did not cause any injuries.

03 May 2010
A large fire gutted a used tyre warehouse in Industrial Area 5, Sharjah. No injuries or fatalities were reported.

11 May 2010
A large fire in Sharjah broke out at the National Paints factory warehouse which gutted four of the factory's warehouse.

12 May 2010
Five warehouses were gutted by a massive fire that broke out in Ras Al Khor Industrial area.
13 June 2010
Two apartments were destroyed in a fire that broke out at in a 11-storey building in the Tourist Club Area (TCA) in Abu Dhabi.

6 July 2010
A fire broke out in a 14-storey building in Bu Tinah area, Sharjah spreading panic among residents.

Compiled by Gulf News Archive