CEBU CITY (7th UPDATE) - Fire hit the Metro Ayala Center Cebu at the Cebu Business Park Friday night.
The Bureau of Fire Protection has yet to declare the blaze under control, which has been raging for more than 12 hours.
The fire, which broke out at 9:30 p.m. at the toys stockroom in the third floor, reached the topmost floor of the Metro Department Store Supermarket.
Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office chief Nagiel Bañacia said the fire has destroyed the whole supermarket.
Video courtesy of Immae Lachica, ABS-CBN News
He said it may take two days before the fire can be declared under control.
As of 9 a.m. Saturday, thick black smoke continued to billow from the building.
Bañacia said the BFP is trying to prevent the fire from reaching the main mall.
No one was reported injured. All customers and mall employees were safely evacuated.
The blaze was raised to Task Force Bravo, prompting firefighting units from neighboring towns and cities to respond.
Heavy duty construction equipment, including a crane, have been used to demolish the building's concrete walls to clear the smoke and let firefighters douse the blaze.
Cracks have been observed by city disaster officials, who fear that the building may cave in.
Ayala Center Cebu, in a statement on Facebook, said its emergency teams are working with the BFP to manage the incident.
"The Metro Ayala Emergency Brigade Team and Ayala Center Cebu Emergency Brigade Team are working with the Bureau of Fire [Protection] and other emergency response teams to manage the situation and ensure all customers and personnel are safely evacuated," it said.
In an earlier interview over DYAB Cebu, Bañacia said the sprinkler system didn't work after the department store's generator sets were turned off when the fire broke out.
"Kung niandar ilang sprinkler system, di moabot ingani kadak-a ang sunog (If the sprinkler system only worked, the fire wouldn't be this huge)," Banacia told DYAB.
--Reports from Donna Lavares, Immae Lachica, Edgar Escalante, Rhea Soco, Angie Saniel, ABS-CBN News