DHAKA: Seventeen people were killed, including ten women, in a fire that broke out at an illegal firecracker storage unit in India capital Delhi Saturday evening (January 20), reports NDTV.
Around 50 workers were trapped inside the three-floor unit, and Delhi Fire Services said a majority of the deaths were caused by burns while a few died after inhaling toxic fumes.
Fire officials said the fire broke out in the basement of the warehouse in north Delhi's Bawana Industrial Area around 6:20 pm and moved up to the floors above. Chief Fire Officer Atul Garg said, “We received a call around 6.30 pm. The fire was not very big and we were able to douse it easily. We took out 17 bodies. Some people had already escaped. It was a firecracker storage factory, where they would redistribute big firecracker packets into smaller ones.”
Three bodies were reportedly found on the ground floor, and one in the basement. The others were found on the upper floors, most of them charred. “On the first floor, we found two women charred and in a tight embrace,” said a firefighter. One of those trapped inside got injured after he tried to escape the fire by jumping from the top floor and broke his legs.
The cause of the fire is yet to be determined.
The police, which filed a complaint, said two people were injured in the fire and have been admitted to a hospital.
The Delhi Fire Services say they received a call about the blaze at the factory around 6.20 pm and fire engines were rushed to the spot immediately. The fire has been brought under control.
One of the workers, in a bid to escape the fire, jumped off the second floor and fractured his leg.
The police said the people were either charred or got choked to death.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressed anguish at the death of people in the fire. "My thoughts are with the families of those who lost their lives. May those who are injured recover quickly," the Prime Minister's Office tweeted quoting the PM.
BDST: 0846 HRS, JAN 21, 2018