Heat from a blaze in New Plymouth yesterday was so intense it melted a fireman's boots.
The city's fire brigade was alerted to the blaze at the Carefirst Medical Centre on Tukapa St about 6.30am.
It was the second major fire in the city in the past few days after St Philomena's Catholic Church was gutted in an alleged arson on Monday.
Station officer Keith Murphy said a passerby raised the alarm yesterday after seeing smoke coming from the side of the Westown pharmacy.
"Once we got inside and on to the roof we discovered a well involved fire in the ceiling space," Mr Murphy said.
Two fire crews wearing breathing apparatus entered the building and used high-pressure hoses to extinguish the flames.
Mr Murphy said a firefighter working on the roof had to be brought down after the soles of his gumboots melted.
Firefighters remained at the scene for about two hours and the cause of the blaze was being investigated by a fire safety officer.
The business remained closed yesterday but it was expected to reopen today.
Mr Murphy said early indications were that the fire started in an airconditioning unit. Ventilation fans were used to clear smoke from the building.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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