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Spain: the death toll from the Valencia fire revised down to 9 deaths

The spectacular fire which devastated Thursday a residential building at Valencia, in the south-east of Spain, has left at least nine dead, according to a new report reviewed à the decline Friday by the authorities.

The scientific police “determined during the identification process that the number of bodies found at the moment amounts to nine”, indicated Friday evening on the social network 60~/p>

Ms. Bernabé had announced to the press a few hours earlier a death toll of 10.

She had also indicated “not to rule out” the possibility of other deaths, “because there will be other inspections” while the number of people who could still be missing was not clear.

Firefighters and members of the scientific police combed through the rubble of the building on Friday, completely charred by one of the most serious fires in recent years in Spain.

The extreme heat reigning in the building, located in the Campanar district, had prevented them from being able to enter for many hours.

– “Like we threw gasoline” –

According to the president of the Valencia region, Carlos Mazón, 15 people were treated for injuries of varying degrees, including seven firefighters.

Spain: the death toll from the Valencia fire revised down to 9 deaths

A fire devastates a residential building in Valencia, February 22, 2024 in Spain © AFP – Jose Jordan

The fire, which broke out on Thursday around 5:30 p.m. (4:30 p.m. GMT) in an intermediate floor, spread within a few minutes to the entire building with 138 apartments, according to local residents. The cause of the fire remains to be determined.

“It was horrible,” Vicente Ferrer, a 72-year-old retiree, told AFP. who the building burned “faster” than the cardboard figurines set on fire during the “Fallas”, the famous traditional festivals organized in March in Valencia and which usually attract a million people to Spain's third city.< /p>

“It's as if we had thrown gasoline” on the building, added Sergio Pérez, a 49-year-old driver.

Visiting the scene, Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez expressed his “empathy” and his “solidarity with the victims”.

Some 105 people, who could not be welcomed by relatives, had to be relocated by the authorities, said the city's mayor, Maria José Catala.

– The covering questioned –

Several experts have questioned the role of a material used as insulation on the ventilated facade of the building in the extremely advanced rapid flames, as during the Grenfell Tower tragedy in London in June 2017, in which 72 people lost their lives.

Faustino Yanguas, Valencia firefighters , confirmed that this material “which will have to be investigated, was a factor which contributed greatly” to the rapid spread of the flames, as did “the wind gusts which exceeded 60 km/h”.

In total, around thirty teams of firefighters were deployed on site Thursday to fight the flames, emergency services said on X.

These firefighters notably saved a father and his daughter, trapped on their balcony.

Three days of mourning were decreed in Valencia, where the local authorities announced aid from several thousands of euros for the affected families.

Spain: the death toll from the Valencia fire revised down to 9 deaths

A fire devastates a residential building in Valencia, February 22, 2024 in Spain © AFP – Jose Jordan

The town hall also announced that it would provide them with 131 apartments in a building it has just acquired.

A match from Spanish football championship scheduled for Saturday between the Valencia and Granada clubs has also been postponed.

Spain was recently marked by a dramatic fire which killed 13 died in early October in a nightclub in Murcia (south-east). Six people were charged in December with “involuntary homicide” after this tragedy.

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