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Watch: 13 suffer from suffocation in Abu Dhabi towers fire

Watch: 13 suffer from suffocation in Abu Dhabi towers fire

Abu Dhabi - The fire has been extinguished. Occupants of neighbouring building evacuated and taken to a temporary ERC shelter.

By Ashwani Kumar/Wam

Published: Wed 31 Aug 2016, 12:59 PM

Thirteen people, including ten fire-fighters, suffered from mild suffocation in a fire that broke out on Tuesday in two under-construction buildings in Abu Dhabi's Zahia area, wam reported today.
A joint team from the Abu Dhabi Civil Defence and Quick Intervention Unit contained the fire from spilling over to nearby residential buildings and rescued construction workers trapped in the two towers.
Lt. Colonel Mohamed Al Ansari, Director-General of Abu Dhabi Civil Defence, said the operations room received a fire report at 10:50am and immediately dispatched fire engines to the scene of the incident.
"Occupants of the neighbouring building were evacuated and taken to a temporary shelter provided by the Emirates Red Crescent,'' he added.
Earlier today, a large fire broke out in an under-construction building in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday morning.

According to eyewitnesses, the fire started in the 27-storey building near an Abu Dhabi mall next to the City Terminal at around 11 am.

Six-seven fire engines have been pressed into service and more are on their way.

It is suspected that the fire started due to faulty air-conditioning.

Close to 600 workers are said to be working on the site, according to a worker.
Abu Dhabi officials tell Khaleej Times that an official statement on the fire and response efforts will be made later on Tuesday afternoon.

No casualties have been reported so far.
The fire started from morning 11 am at a 28-storey building next to beach Rotana Hotel, according to eye witness.
More than 10 fire engines were pressed into rescue operation.
Civil Defence helicopter was monitoring the building. Strong winds were making situation worse for rescue operations. At 4pm, the situation has been largely brought under control. Traffic on the Al Maryah Island Bridge was blocked and on Abu Dhabi Mall road diverted. The contracting firm, Ghantoot Group, which manages the construction, has an onsite office.
"All of us were immediately evacuated," a staff of the contracting firm said.
"This project started at 2013-end or early 2014. We were going to finish the project by November and hand it over to Rotana," he said.
The staff said the project was part residential and part hotel. There are conflicting versions as to how the fire broke out. A worker said it happened on the 23rd floor where welding work was going on.
"There were lot of foam, plastic and other flammable materials. I was on the 22nd floor, when a co-worker felt something fell on him. Soon, we realised it's a fire and we rushed down," he said.
Another eyewitness said the fire started from the ground floor and spread upwards. "It could be short circuit or ACs going burst. The major fire broke out in the ground floor of the portion were the hotel project is underway." 

A site supervisor said that more than 1,000 workers are on the project.
"They start working from 6am," he said. "All of them are safe. One person was stuck inside but he too has been rescued."

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