At least 7 people die in Bangladesh high-rise fire

At least 7 people die in Bangladesh high-rise fire

Many people were trapped inside the building, but fire officials said after battling the blaze for several hours that most had been rescued.

Al Jazeera's Tanveer Chaudhry, reporting from Dhaka, said "at least six people have jumped off the building".

One student, Faisal Rifayat, said he saw three people attempting to escape by climbing out of the eighth floor soon after the fire began, but one fell and was later declared dead.

"Three people appear to have died afer jumping from upper floors of the building", United Hospital spokesman Sazzadur Rahman Shuvo told AFP.

The fire at the FR Tower, on a busy avenue in Dhaka's Banani commercial district, was the latest in a city where flouted building regulations and safety norms have made deadly blazes common.

At least one person was seen falling from the building, as a large crowd watched the tragic scenes from the street below.


By evening there were still some pockets of fire in the building, though it had largely been doused, officials said.

A helicopter winched more people off the roof of the building as clouds of smoke continued to billow from the blazing structure.

The fire broke out sometime after 12pm when all the people were in a hurry to finish work before lunch on the last working day of the week.

'We got the call from the downstairs about the fire and I rushed to the rooftop and jumped on the nearby rooftop along with many others and escaped the fire, ' said Mofazzal in broken voice. Another death was reported at the Dhaka Medical College hospital.

Duronto TV and Radio Today on the two adjacent buildings stopped broadcast due to evacuation.

A military spokesman, Abdullah Ibne Zaid, said the body of a Sri Lankan man was brought to the army's Kurmitola Hospital and another 45 people were being treated there.


Many of those trapped waved frantically from the building's windows and roof, witnesses said, as passersby stood watching and praying below.

Officials carried charred bodies out as hundreds of people gathered in the street below.

He said that the building housed many corporate offices and few shops on ground floor and the first floor.

Scores of fire fighters were backed by navy and air force experts, authorities said.

However, fire service did not comment on what caused the fire.

A massive blaze in Dhaka's old quarter on February 21 killed at least 70 people and injured 50 others. "The fire started in a restaurant on the sixth floor".


In 2012, a fire raced through a garment factory on the outskirts of Dhaka, killing at least 112 people trapped behind its locked gates.

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