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Bangladesh: Restaurant fire kills 44 in capital

At least 44 people were killed. killed and dozens of others injured in a fire that started in a restaurant and ravaged Thursday evening a seven-story building in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, announced the government.

“So far, there have been 43 deaths” in the disaster, Health Minister Samanta Lal Sen told AFP after visiting the Dhaka University Hospital and another nearby establishment specializing in the treatment of severe burns, where at least 40 injured people had been admitted.

Police inspector Bacchu Mia said that another person had died at the main police hospital in Dhaka, bringing the death toll to 44.

Around forty injured people are being treated in a specific hospital for severe burns, added Mr. Sen. “None of them are out of danger,” he told AFP.

The fire broke out on Thursday at 9:50 p.m. (1550 GMT), at a popular restaurant on Bailey Road, in a wealthy area of ​​the capital, and quickly spread upstairs, trapping many people, said Mohammad Shihab, a fire official.

The disaster was brought under control in two hours, he said.

In total, 75 people were rescued, according to a press release from the firefighters.

– Gas cylinder suspected –

< img alt = "AFP" src = "https://img-4.linternaute.com/iwr7qlsse58oob9fmtq4cxfcxfw=/600x/smart/3894318bd84cb6b6b6b6b6b6b6b6b6b61d2833d3158368/ccmcms-lintern PG " /> Firefighters battle a fire that devastated a building in the Bangladesh capital Dhaka on February 29, 2024. © AFP – Munir Uz Zaman

Firefighters told journalists they suspected the explosion of a gas cylinder in the restaurant as the probable cause of the fire.

The fire “quickly crossed the upper floor because there were restaurants on almost every floor of the building. They use gas cylinders,” said a firefighter, speaking on condition of anonymity.

The government has ordered an investigation.

Bailey Road is mainly home to restaurants as well as several clothing and cell phone stores.

“We were on the sixth floor when we started seeing smoke coming up the stairs. A lot of people were rushing to get upstairs,” said Sohel, the manager of a restaurant.

“We used a water pipe to go down. Some of us were injured jumping,” said- he said again.

Others were stuck on the roof and calling for help.

“We are bringing down all the women and children, including my wife and children. All of us men are on the roof. The firefighters are by our side. We still have fifty people to bring down,” he said. writes Kamruzzaman Majumdar, a professor of environmental sciences, on Facebook. He was then rescued.

Bangladesh: Restaurant fire kills 44 in capital

Firefighters extract injured people from a fire-ravaged building in Bangladesh's capital Dhaka on February 29, 2024. © AFP – Munir Uz Zaman

Hundreds of relatives of the victims rushed to Dhaka Medical University Hospital where ambulances transported the dead and injured.

Fires in apartment buildings and industrial complexes are common in Bangladesh due to lax enforcement of safety regulations.

In July 2021, at least 52 people died, including many children, when flames devastated a food factory.

In February 2019, 70 people died when a fire spread through several apartment buildings in Dhaka.

All rights of reproduction and representation reserved. © (2024) Agence France-Presse

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116