45 killed in Bangladesh shopping mall fire


A severe fire at a six-story shopping mall in Dhaka, Bangladesh, resulted in the deaths of at least 45 individuals and injuries to many others.

The blaze at Green Cozy Cottage Shopping Mall began late Thursday on the first floor within a biryani restaurant. Firefighting teams, numbering 13 units, managed to extinguish the fire after two hours.

Medical professionals report that the majority of fatalities were due to suffocation, while some victims died attempting to escape by jumping from the building. Numerous individuals are currently receiving medical attention for burns at two government hospitals.

Brigadier General Main Uddin, a senior fire service official, suggested the fire might have started from a gas leak or a malfunctioning stove, citing the building’s hazardous conditions with gas cylinders stored improperly throughout the premises.

Families arrived at hospitals early Friday to claim the remains of their loved ones, with grief palpable outside the emergency rooms. Health Minister Samanta Lal Sen has indicated that the death toll may increase.

Survivor Mohammad Altaf shared his escape, breaking a window in the kitchen to jump to safety. He noted the early efforts of a cashier and server to evacuate people, both of whom tragically died later.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has expressed her condolences and directed immediate aid for the injured. A committee of five members has been established to investigate the fire.

Such incidents underscore the broader issue of fire safety in Dhaka, a city prone to fires due to rapid construction that often overlooks proper safety protocols. Historical tragedies, including the deaths at a food processing plant in 2021 and a significant fire in 2019, along with notable industrial accidents, spotlight the ongoing risks in various sectors, emphasizing the need for improved safety standards.

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Rebecca Spayne Managing Editor, International Fire Buyer
Tel: +44 (0) 1622 823 920
Email: editor@firebuyer.com

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