17 Dead In China Restaurant Fire

File Photo.

 

A fire at a restaurant in northeastern China on Wednesday killed 17 people and injured another three, according to local authorities.

The blaze broke out at 12:40 pm (0440 GMT) in an eatery in the city of Changchun, the local government said in a statement posted on the Weibo social media platform.

Firefighters “rushed to the scene” and completed search and rescue work by 3 pm, the statement said.

“The injured have been sent to hospital for treatment while posthumous care for the victims is being carried out,” it added.

Authorities said the cause of the incident is under investigation.

A fire at a restaurant in northeastern China on Wednesday killed 17 people and injured another three, according to local authorities.


READ ALSO: 50,000 People Displaced In Cuba As Hurricane Ian Surges


The blaze broke out at 12:40 pm (0440 GMT) in an eatery in the city of Changchun, the local government said in a statement posted on the Weibo social media platform.

Firefighters “rushed to the scene” and completed search and rescue work by 3 pm, the statement said.

“The injured have been sent to hospital for treatment while posthumous care for the victims is being carried out,” it added.

Authorities said the cause of the incident is under investigation.

Deadly fires occur frequently in China, where lax enforcement of building codes and widespread unauthorised construction can make it hard for people to flee burning buildings.

Earlier this month, a huge blaze in the central city of Changsha engulfed part of a skyscraper housing an office of state-owned telecommunications company China Telecom, but no casualties were reported.

In July last year, a warehouse fire in northeastern Jilin province killed 15 people and injured 25 more, according to state media reports.

The month before that, a fire killed 18 people — mostly children — at a martial arts school in central Henan province, causing an uproar over fire safety standards.

A further two dozen people died in a pair of blazes in Beijing’s migrant neighbourhoods in 2017, while 58 perished when a huge fire swept through a 28-storey Shanghai housing block in 2010.

Fire Engulfs Skyscraper In China’s Changsha City

A picture of the Chinese flag.
The Chinese flag.

 

A fire engulfed a skyscraper Friday in the central Chinese city of Changsha, with authorities saying that no casualties had yet been found.

The blaze broke out in a 42-floor building housing an office of state-owned telecommunications company China Telecom, according to state broadcaster CCTV.

“Thick smoke billowed from the site, and dozens of floors burned ferociously,” CCTV reported.

The provincial fire department said later in a social media post that “at present, the fire has been extinguished, and we have not yet discovered any casualties”.


READ ALSO: More Than 200 Dead In Armenia-Azerbaijan Clashes This Week


An initial photograph released by CCTV showed orange flames searing through the building in a built-up area of the city as black smoke billowed into the sky.

A later image shared on social media appeared to show that the flames had subsided, as emergency personnel sprayed jets of water onto its charred facade.

China Telecom said in a statement on social media: “By around 4:30 pm today, the fire at our No. 2 Communications Tower in Changsha has been extinguished.

“No casualties have yet been discovered and communications have not been cut off.”

A video shared on social media appeared to show dozens of people fleeing the building as flaming debris fell from the upper floors.

AFP was not immediately able to verify the footage.

Changsha, the capital of Hunan province, has a population of about 10 million people.

The 218-metre (715-foot) building was completed in 2000 and is located near a major ring road, according to CCTV.

Deadly fires are common in China, where lax enforcement of building codes and rampant unauthorised construction can make it difficult for people to flee burning buildings.

In July last year, a warehouse fire in northeastern Jilin province killed at least 15 people and injured at least 25, according to state media reports.

The month before that, a fire killed 18 people — mostly children — at a martial arts school in central Henan province, causing an uproar over fire safety standards.

A further two dozen people died in a pair of blazes in Beijing’s migrant neighbourhoods in 2017, while 58 perished when a huge fire swept through a 28-storey Shanghai housing block in 2010.

Fire Guts Section Of Three-Storey Building In Lagos

A truck belong to the Fire Service at the Oniru area of Lagos on September 4, 2022.

 

Tragedy struck in the Oniru, Lekki area of Lagos State as fire gutted a section of a three-story building.

Channels Television’s correspondent, Dare Idowu, who was at the scene, observed that the incident occurred on Sunday morning.

The immediate cause of the inferno is still sketchy as at the time of filing this report.

However, emergency officials including men of the Fire Service were seen responding to the situation.

No casualty has been reported yet, but there are fears that some properties might be lost to the fire.

READ ALSO: Two Dead As Seven-Storey Building Collapses In Lagos

The affected building is located on Ifeanyi Street in Victoria Island. It is barely three streets away from the site of the seven-storey building that collapsed in the early hours of Sunday.

At least two persons have been confirmed dead in Lagos in the building collapse. Four persons were also trapped in the building.

The building, still under construction, caved in on Sunday morning. It is situated at Oba Idowu Oniru Street by Ave Maria Hospital, near Sandfield Bus Stop, Lekki.

The situation forced emergency workers and security operatives to quickly move to the site to possibly rescue the trapped victims.

Permanent Secretary (PS), Lagos State Emergency Management Agency (LASEMA), Dr. Femi Oke-Osanyintolu, and Lagos Territorial Coordinator of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), Ibrahim Farinloye both confirmed the incident.

They also confirmed that six persons were trapped and assured search and rescue operations have commenced at the site.

LASEMA said it responded to a distress call at the location at midnight and activated its response plan where six people were reported to have been trapped at the time.

Death Toll From Algeria Wildfires Rises To Over 40

File photo of an Algerian flag.

 

The death toll has climbed to at least 43 from wildfires that have raged for days in northern Algeria, with numbers expected to rise further, the gendarmerie said Monday.

Thirteen people have been arrested over suspicion of involvement in starting the fires, it added.

“The latest toll of victims from the fires increased to 43,” from 38 recorded two days earlier, the gendarmerie command said on state radio.

Fires had swept through 14 wilayas, or administrative councils, in the north of the country, with most concentrated in the northeastern El Tarf region near the border with Tunisia.

READ ALSO[Father And Son] The Deby Regime Charts Chad’s Future

The gendarmerie, which operates under the defence ministry, added that they are still working on identifying the bodies of the victims.

The death toll is expected to increase, it said, despite earlier reports that the fires had mostly been contained.

Civil protection services said some 31 fires were put out in various parts of the North African country between Saturday and Sunday.

More than 1,000 families were evacuated from various districts over the past few days, the civil defence’s Colonel Boualem Boughlef said on Saturday.

The fires, which have become a yearly fixture due to climate change, have devastated thousands of hectares (acres) of woodland in the mostly-desert country.

Fires last year killed at least 90 people and seared 100,000 hectares (247,000 acres) of forest and farmland in the north.

AFP

26 Dead As Forest Fires Spread In Algeria

File photo of an Algerian flag.

 

At least 26 people died and dozens of others were injured in forest fires that ravaged 14 districts of northern Algeria on Wednesday, the interior minister said.

Kamel Beldjoud told state television that 24 people lost their lives in fires in El Tarf, near the border with Tunisia, in addition to two others who died earlier in Setif.

The civil protection agency in Setif had said that two women, “a 58-year-old mother and her 31-year-old daughter”, were killed in the town.

In Souk Ahras, farther to the east near Algeria’s border with Tunisia, people were seen fleeing their homes as fires spread before firefighting helicopters were deployed.

An earlier toll said four people in Souk Ahras suffered burns and 41 others had breathing difficulties, the authorities said. Media reports said 350 residents had been evacuated.

No updated toll was given on the number of people injured in the fires in other areas.

The gendarmerie has closed several roads as a result of the fires.

READ ALSOEgypt Judge Sentenced To Death For Wife’s Murder

“Thirty-nine fires are underway in 14 wilayas (administrative councils),” the civil protection agency said, noting that El Tarf was the worst hit, with 16 fires in progress.

Helicopters used bambi buckets to drop water on fires in three wilayas, including Souk Ahras.

Since the start of August, 106 fires have broken out in Algeria, destroying more than 2,500 hectares of woodland.

Beldjoud said some of the fires were started by people.

Wednesday’s toll brings the total number of people killed in wildfires this summer up to 30.

Algeria is Africa’s largest country but it only has 4.1 million hectares (10.1 million acres) of forest.

Each year the north of the country is affected by forest fires, a problem that has worsened due to climate change.

Last year, at least 90 people died in forest fires that ravaged northern Algeria, destroying more than 100,000 hectares of woodland.

AFP

Fire Guts Shopping Mall In Lagos

The scene of the fire outbreak in the Victoria Island area of Lagos State.

 

Fire on Wednesday gutted a part of the shopping complex on Ligali Ayorinde Street in the Victoria Island area of Lagos State.

Channels Television gathered that the inferno started in the early hours of Wednesday in one of the shops where combustible items such as tyres and car batteries were stored.

READ ALSO: 174 Stranded Nigerians Return From Libya

The South-West Coordinator, National Emergency Management Agency, Mr Ibrahim Farinloye, confirmed the incident.

He said the fire has been brought under control after officials of the state and Federal Fire Services battled to put it out.

The cause of the inferno, which lasted for hours before it was contained, is yet to be ascertained.

“The fire incident happened at a shopping centre but it has been handled by Federal and state fire services,” Farinloye said.

According to the NEMA Coordinator, an investigation was ongoing and the report would be made available upon completion.

Cases of fire outbreaks are common in Nigeria’s commercial capital. On April 13, a fire incident occurred in the Maryland area of Lagos that made people to panic.

The incident caused gridlock in the area as passengers, residents and passers-by scampered to safety.

Armenian Blast Death Toll Rises To Five, Over 60 Injured

Rescue workers operate on the site of a retail market in the Armenian capital Yerevan on August 14, 2022.  AFP

 

The death toll from an explosion at a bustling shopping market in the Armenian capital Yerevan rose to five on Monday.

Four women and one man died, over 60 were injured and 19 were missing after Sunday’s blast at the Surmalu wholesale market, the Ministry of Emergency Situations said.

READ ALSO: One Dead, 20 Injured In Armenian Market Explosion

Search and rescue operations were carried out overnight, it said, with 10 survivors and one body pulled from the rubble.

The explosion caused a fire and led to the collapse of a building.

The cause has not yet been established, but local news reports, citing witnesses, said the explosion went off at a place that stored fireworks.

Photos and videos posted on social media showed a thick column of black smoke over the market and what appeared to be a series of detonations can be heard.

Prosecutors meanwhile launched a probe into violations “on stocking inflammable goods”, breaches in fire safety standards and the death of people “due to negligence”.

In all, 200 firefighters and medical workers were sent to the scene, as well as fire engines and construction site equipment.

Rescue workers used a digger to clear away rubble, an AFP journalist at the scene reported earlier.

The disaster comes as the country of three million people is still recovering from a 2020 war with Azerbaijan, which ended in a heavy defeat and sparked a political crisis.

One Dead, 20 Injured In Armenian Market Explosion

Rescue workers operate on the site of a retail market in the Armenian capital Yerevan on August 14, 2022, after an explosion sparked a fire, killing one person and injuring 51, according to the emergency situations ministry.  AFP

 

An explosion at a retail market in the Armenian capital Yerevan on Sunday sparked a fire, killing one person and injuring 20, the emergency situations ministry said.

The blast, the cause of which was not immediately known, ripped through the “retail market in Surmalu. According to preliminary information it started a fire. There are victims,” the ministry said.

Photos and videos posted on social media showed a thick column of black smoke over the market and successive detonations could be heard.

The ministry said there were 10 firefighting trucks on the spot and another 10 were on their way.

AFP

Thai Nightclub Fire Kills 13, PM Orders Probe

This handout photo taken and released on August 5, 2022 by the Sawang Rojanathammasathan Rescue Foundation shows firefighters working to contain a fire at the Mountain B nightclub in Sattahip district in Thailand’s Chonburi province.  (Photo by Handout / Sawang Rojanathammasathan Rescue Foundation / AFP)

 

Thailand’s prime minister on Friday ordered an investigation into a massive blaze that tore through a nightclub, killing at least 13 people.

The fire broke out around 1:00 am (1800 GMT Thursday) at the Mountain B nightspot in Chonburi province’s Sattahip district, about 150 kilometres (90 miles) southeast of Bangkok.

Video footage posted by a rescue service showed desperate revellers fleeing the club screaming, their clothes ablaze, as a huge fire raged in the background.

The Sawang Rojanathammasathan Rescue Foundation said 13 people were killed and more than 40 injured, 14 of them seriously.

The service said the blaze was accelerated by flammable acoustic foam on the walls of the club, and it took firefighters more than three hours to bring it under control.

Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-Cha offered condolences to the victims’ families and said he had ordered a probe into the fire.

READ ALSO: US Says Russia Will Fake Scene Around Mass POW Deaths To Blame Ukraine

The dead — four women and nine men — were found mostly crowded by the entrance and in the bathroom, their bodies severely burned, the service said.

They were aged between 17 and 49 and all are believed to have been Thai.

“There is not death related to foreigners,” police lieutenant colonel Boonsong Yingyong of the Phlu Ta Luang police station, which oversees the area where the blaze occurred, told AFP by phone.

Charred Wreck 

This handout photo taken and released on August 5, 2022 by the Sawang Rojanathammasathan Rescue Foundation shows rescue workers inside the Mountain B nightclub after a fire in Sattahip district in Thailand’s Chonburi province. (Photo by Handout / Sawang Rojanathammasathan Rescue Foundation / AFP)

 

One of the victims was the singer of the band playing at the club, his mother told local media.

“I don’t know what to say. The death came all of a sudden,” Premjai Sae-Oung told reporters.

She said a musician friend who managed to escape had told her the fire broke out in front of the band and spread rapidly.

Images of the aftermath showed how the fire had turned the inside of the club into a blackened wreck, with the charred metal frames of furniture scattered among ashes.

Engineers are inspecting the one-storey building amid fears it could collapse.

Interior minister Anupong Paochinda told reporters it appeared the Mountain B was operating “without permission” to run as an entertainment venue.

Concerns have long been raised about Thailand’s lax approach to health and safety regulations, particularly in its countless bars and nightclubs.

A massive inferno erupted at a New Year’s Eve party at Bangkok’s swanky Santika club in 2009, killing 67 people and injuring more than 200.

The Santika owner was jailed for three years over the blaze, which began when fireworks were let off as a rock band called Burn played on stage.

More recently, four people were killed in a fire caused by an electrical fault at a club on the holiday island of Phuket, a magnet for foreign tourists, in 2012.

AFP

Year’s Largest Fire Destroys California Homes

Flames burn to the Klamath River during the McKinney Fire in the Klamath National Forest northwest of Yreka, California, on July 31, 2022.  (Photo by DAVID MCNEW / AFP)

 

The largest fire in California this year is forcing thousands of people to evacuate as it destroys homes and rips through the state’s dry terrain, whipped up on Sunday by strong winds and lightning storms.

The McKinney Fire was completely uncontained as it burned in Klamath National Forest in Northern California, CalFire said, spreading over more than 51,000 acres near the city of Yreka.

It is the largest wildfire so far this year in California, which has already battled several blazes this summer.

California Governor Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency Saturday, saying the fire had “destroyed homes” and “threatened critical infrastructure” after breaking out on Friday.

The fire was “intensified and spread by dry fuels, extreme drought conditions, high temperatures, winds, and lightning storms,” Newsom said in a statement.

More than 2,000 residents were under evacuation orders and some 200 under evacuation warnings, according to the California Office of Emergency Services, mostly in Siskiyou County.

“Surrounding areas should be ready to leave if needed. Please don’t hesitate to evacuate,” the Siskiyou County Sheriff tweeted.

Highway 96 and McKinney Creed Road southwest of the Klamath River were closed to the public, CalFire said.

Yreka resident Larry Castle told the Sacramento Bee newspaper that he and his wife had packed up a few possessions and their three dogs to leave the area for the night, as other fires in recent years had taught them the situation could turn “very, very serious.”

Nearly 650 people were working to douse the blaze as of Sunday, the National Wildfire Coordinating Group said.

Firefighting forces were sent from nearby Oregon to help containment efforts, the Oregon State Fire Marshal said, as the Klamath National Forest also deals with the Kelsey Creek Fire.

CalFire said the cause of the fire was still “under investigation.”

READ ALSO: First Grain Shipment Leaves Ukraine As Southern City Pounded


The ruins of the Oak Mobile Park are seen at the McKinney Fire in the Klamath National Forest northwest of Yreka, California, on July 31, 2022.  (Photo by DAVID MCNEW / AFP)

 

The US Forest Service said “a heavy smoke inversion” had helped to limit the growth of the fire on Sunday, but also meant that firefighters’ aircraft were also “mostly grounded.”

Fire crews were working above Fort Jones and west of Yreka “to cut off the fire’s progress,” the USFS said.

The record-breaking blaze was sparked just days after the year’s previous largest fire raged in central California.

The Oak Fire near Yosemite National Park broke out in mid-July and spread rapidly, destroying 41 buildings and forcing thousands to evacuate.

California, which is facing a punishing drought, still has months of fire season ahead of it.

In recent years, California and other parts of the western United States have been ravaged by huge and fast-moving wildfires, driven by a warming climate.

Other parts of the world have also faced intense wildfires this year.

On Sunday, both Portugal and France were battling major forest fires, as temperatures rose sharply in Europe over the weekend.

In Portugal, a blaze broke out in the Mafra area, north of Lisbon, while in France at least four firefighters were seriously injured and motorways were closed.

Around 400 firefighters were drafted in to fight the blaze around 40 kilometres (25 miles) north of Lisbon.

Also over the weekend, hundreds of firefighters in Germany battled a blaze in the east of the country, with four people injured, authorities said.

Scientists say climate change is making heatwaves around the world more frequent and more intense, increasing the risk of fires.

AFP

30 Burnt To Death In Kaduna Road Accident

A map showing Kaduna, a state in Nigeria's North-Central region.
A map showing Kaduna, a state in Nigeria’s north-west region.

 

At least thirty people have been killed in a road accident along the Zaria-Kano highway in Kaduna state.

The road crash which involved two 18- seater Toyota buses and a Volkswagen Golf, occurred around 5pm on Thursday at Hawan Mai Mashi community in Makarfi Local Government Area of Kaduna State .

The accident was caused by a speed violation, which led to a collusion of the three vehicles, after which flames erupted.

Most of the passengers who were trapped inside the vehicles got burnt severely, leading to their death.

Witnesses say the victims had no way to escape from the vehicles.

According to an Assistant Corps Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corps, Zaria Zone, Abdulrahman Husaini, the accident was caused by dangerous overtaking by one of the vehicles.

Hussaini disclosed that some injured passengers were rushed to the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital Shika for urgent medical treatment, while the remains of those that died were evacuated and deposited at the hospital mortuary.

Fuel Tanker Explodes, Destroys Vehicles In Lagos

Fire officials battle the raging inferno at the Otto Wharf, Mile 2 area of Lagos State.

 

A tanker laden with diesel has exploded in Lagos, destroying several vehicles in the Otto wharf, Mile 2 area of the state.

The incident was said to have occurred on Tuesday afternoon at an articulated vehicle motor park in the community.

In viral video clips obtained by Channels Television on Wednesday, several vehicles could be seen burning as fire service officials battled the inferno.

READ ALSO: Teenager Killed, Shops Razed As Petrol Tanker Explodes In Lagos

The Permanent Secretary of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, Dr Olufemi Oke-Osanyintolu, confirmed the incident via a statement, saying the agency activated its response plan after receiving a distress call to the incident.

“Upon arrival at the scene by the agency response team, a fire outbreak from a fuel tanker and drums was encountered. LRT, LRU FIRE alongside LAGS FIRE and FED FIRE are currently battling the inferno to contain it,” he said.

According to Oke-Osanyintolu, all stakeholders were on the ground to stop the fire from spreading further.

The Senior Special Assistant to the Lagos State Governor on New Media, Jubril Gawat, also confirmed the incident.

Taking to his Twitter handle on Tuesday, he shared pictures showing emergency officials responding to the situation.

“The Lagos State Fire and Rescue Service is presently combating intense Fire at an articulated Motor Park, Otto Wharf, Mile 2, Lagos which resulted from a tanker carrying diesel that exploded and resulted in inferno reported at 3:44 pm,” he stated.

 

Tanker explosions is not new to the nation’s commercial capital as trucks carrying fuel usually ply the road.

On April 22, a tanker transporting  Premium Motor Spirit (PMS), also known as petrol exploded along the Lagos – Abeokuta Expressway, Alagbado killing a teenage girl.

Officials of the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) who confirmed the incident explained that the tanker was conveying 45,000 litres of petrol before it crashed and spilled its content on the road.

NEMA said emergency responders swiftly arrived at the scene, adding that officials of the Lagos State Fire Service handled the raging inferno from the Lagos end while their counterparts from the Ogun State Fire Service faced it from the Ogun side of the road.

See photos from the scene below: