Greater than 70 killed in Bangladesh blaze, toll nonetheless rising


As many as 70 individuals died in a serious fireplace that engulfed a number of buildings in a centuries-old neighborhood of the Bangladesh capital, a hearth official mentioned on Thursday, warning the toll may climb as firefighters scour the rubble.

Lax laws and poor enforcement of guidelines in impoverished Bangladesh have usually been blamed for a number of giant fires which have led to a whole lot of deaths in recent times.

Town’s worst fireplace since 2012 broke out late on Wednesday night time in a five-storey constructing, earlier than spreading to others close by within the Chawkbazar precinct, components of which date again greater than 300 years to the Mughal interval.

“Up to now, 70 our bodies have been recovered,” Julfikar Rahman, a director of the Fireplace Service and Civil Defence, advised Reuters. “The quantity may rise additional because the search continues.”

Not less than a dozen of the roughly 50 individuals taken to the hospital have been in important situation, Rahman added. Tons of of distraught family members thronged the Dhaka Medical Faculty and Hospital to hunt lacking family members, witnesses mentioned.

“All of them have been crying and determined,” mentioned a Reuters witness. “Family entered the morgue and searched a register for the names of their nearest and dearest.”

About 200 firefighters had battled for greater than 5 hours to comprise the blaze in slender lanes snaking between tightly-packed buildings in an space authorities say is house to greater than three million individuals.

Firemen mentioned they struggled to get sufficient water to douse the flames and needed to pump provides from a close-by mosque.

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“The realm is so congested, there is no such thing as a extensive house or spacious street to simply usher in water,” fireplace official A Ok M Shakil Nowaz advised Reuters on the web site. “We didn’t discover any water supply close by, so it took a number of hours to place out.”

The hearth broke out in a constructing with outlets on its floor ground, a warehouse for plastics and flammable materials on the primary, and houses on three flooring above, mentioned Shamim Harun ur Rashid, an area police official.

“It’s unclear whether or not anybody who lived on the flooring above is alive,” mentioned Rashid, including that the trigger was being investigated.
Witnesses mentioned the blaze unfold after the explosion of gasoline cylinders in an adjoining restaurant and a parked van.

Tons of of burnt fragrance or deodorant cans littered the street close to the partially collapsed constructing the place the fireplace started, a Reuters witness mentioned. The hearth has revived concern about lax enforcement of constructing security laws.

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