Thursday, 17 August, 2017

Fire breaks out at Dubai residential tower

Dubai Torch Tower hit by fire again Massive fire engulfs Dubai high-rise building
Christy Curtis | 05 August, 2017, 01:02

This is the second time that the tower - believed to be the fifth tallest residential building in the world - has caught fire in the last two years.

A statement from the Dubai Media Office said: "The fire at the Torch Tower has been brought under control".

In fact, it was not the first time for the Torch to be on fire.

"Thanks to the efforts of the teams on the ground, the inhabitants have been evacuated from the building", said the chief of Dubai police, general Abdullah Khalifa al-Marri.

The resident said a lot of people got out of the building but added that it was unclear if there were people still trapped inside.

Plumes of fire and smoke were seen rising across the 86-floor tower after the fire broke out.

It is not yet known what has caused the massive blaze, but authorities say there have been no reported casualties.

"People still escaping torch tower Dubai. building is well ablaze. looks worse than 2015 fire", Rob Sheperd tweeted.

Authorities later said the fire had been put out, and "cooling operations" were underway. It took about 10 minutes for the residents from the 50th floor to exit the building.

By 4.00 a.m. the exterior of the building showed no sign of fire as residents and onlookers stood around staring up at the building, according to a Reuters witness. The AP mentions that an inferno broke out at a 63-story luxury hotel in Dubai on New Year's Eve in 2016.

Under Dubai's new fire and safety code, builders are required "to ensure that the flammability of the cladding is as close to zero as possible".

The United Arab Emirates issued new fire safety rules earlier this year that requires buildings with flammable cladding to be retrofitted with fire-resistant panels. Older buildings were exempt from the updates to the regulations.

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