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Fatal fire in Nanjing residential building claims 15 lives, injures dozens


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Deadly blaze erupts in Nanjing residential building

At least 15 individuals lost their lives and 44 were injured in a devastating fire that engulfed a residential building in Nanjing, eastern China.

The local authorities reported the tragic incident on Saturday, following the fire that broke out in the early hours of Friday morning.

According to officials at a press conference, initial investigations point towards the fire starting on the building’s first floor, where electric bikes were stored.

Nanjing, a bustling city with a population exceeding eight million, is located approximately 260 kilometres northwest of Shanghai.

The incident occurred in the Yuhuatai district, raising concerns about fire safety in densely populated urban areas.

Firefighting efforts and casualties

The firefighting teams managed to extinguish the fire by 6 am (2200 GMT Thursday), and the search and rescue operations concluded around 2 pm on Friday.

Images and videos that emerged on Chinese social networks painted a harrowing picture of the event.

Footage showed a skyscraper ablaze against the night sky, with thick black smoke rising into the air.

Further images captured gigantic flames engulfing several floors of the building, with the emergency services’ flashing lights illuminating the scene.

Later footage revealed white smoke still emanating from the structure.

Officials confirmed that the 44 injured individuals were promptly taken to hospital for medical treatment.

Among them, one person was described as being in “critical condition” and another sustained serious injuries.

Official response and public reaction

In response to the tragedy, Nanjing’s mayor, Chen Zhichang, extended his condolences and apologies to the families of the victims during a press conference.

“On behalf of the city’s administration, I extend our deepest sympathies and apologies to the families who have suffered losses in this tragic incident,” said Mayor Chen.

The fire has sparked a broader discussion on the safety measures in place for residential buildings, especially concerning the storage and charging of electric bikes, which have been implicated in the fire’s origin.

IFSJ Comment

The devastating fire in Nanjing’s Yuhuatai district underscores the urgent need for stringent fire safety protocols, especially in residential areas.

The loss of 15 lives and the injuries sustained by 44 individuals highlight the catastrophic potential of such incidents.

It is imperative for city planners, safety regulators, and residents to collaborate on enhancing fire safety measures.

The focus should be on preventing similar tragedies through improved building codes, regular safety inspections, and public awareness campaigns on fire hazards.

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