From The Torch to The Address: 2015 was the year fires dominated the UAE headlines
As Dubai rang in the New Year, smoke filled the skies from a fire at The Address hotel, but it was just one of several major blazes to dominate newspaper headlines over the last 12 months.
Several major fires dominated headlines in the UAE during 2015 - the last of which garnered global headlines. December 2015: The Address Downtown hotel catches fire on New Year's Eve, resulting in 14 light and 1 'moderate injury'. \n December 2015: Inside the Address Hotel lobby in Downtown Dubai after the fire had been extinguished. Developer Emaar says that due to insurance coverage, the company will suffer no material damage as a result of the fire. (Photo of the hotel lobby courtesy of Dubai Media Office) December 2015: Six warehouses were destroyed in a fire that broke out in an industrial area in Sharjah on 16 December. The fire erupted in a warehouse in Industrial Area 2 in Sharjah at 7pm and spread to other buildings in the vicinity. There were no casualties. (Image Credit: @Djbryams) December 2015: A fire broke out at a warehouse in the Al Quoz industrial area of Dubai on 7 December, covering part of Sheikh Zayed Road. Dubai civil defence and emergency services attended the scene and battled the blaze in the one-storey building in the area located near the Al Futtaim Motors showroom for approximately one hour. (Image uploaded on Twitter by user Anastasia Golovatenko (@Stassiworld) December 2015: On 1 December, another fire broke out on Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah, sending clouds of black smoke from the manmade island.\nFrom around 11.45am, thick black smoke could be seen rising from an apparently vacant site to the west of the monorail on the trunk of the Palm. (Image posted on social media by @corporatemom)\n \n\n \n November 2015: On 25 November, black smoke covered the top of the 33-storey Regal Tower in Dubai's Business Bay district. \nDeveloped by Tameer, the 33 -storey tower was opened in 2012 and contains around 258 offices. The fire was soon brought under control and there were no casualties. November 2015: Operations on the Green Line of Dubai Metro were halted on 24 November due to a fire near the Abu Baker Al Siddique metro station in Deira, which engulfed the area in thick smoke. The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) confirmed that the Green Line was closed after the blaze broke out at about 5.30pm local time. Dubai Media Office tweeted late that evening that the fire had been put out and there were no injuries reported. October 2015: A massive explosion destroyed part of a Turkish restaurant in Dubai on 20 October. The blast ripped through the building, destroying the walls and upper floors and also causing damage to two villas opposite. No-one was hurt, although the cost of repairs is estimated to amount to $1.6 million. October 2015: More than 250 families were affected by a fire in the Al Nasser Tower in Sharjah which gutted at least 12 apartments in the 34-storey building. The fire took place on 4 October. July 2015: On 13 July, Dubai Civil Defence successfully put out a fire that broke out on Quay 6 on the Dubai Creek, opposite Baniyas Road. The fire, which started at 3pm local time on three boats anchored on the quay, spread to cargo placed on the quay due to strong winds.\nEight firefighting trucks and rescue vehicles plus three firefighting boats were rushed to the spot within minutes of the start of the fire, which was brought fully under control around 6pm. June 2015: On 14 June, Dubai Civil Defence battled an early morning blaze at a warehouse in the Ras Al Khor area of the city. Early morning traffic in the early was affected by the fire, which resulted in large plumes of black smoke rising to the air. May 2015: As many as 13 shops were gutted in Masafi's Friday Market following a fire on 30 May. There were no injuries but some were treated for smoke inhalation on site. Authorities are now reportedly reviewing fire safety standards and procedures at the Friday Market to ensure swift evacuation in the event of another blaze. May 2015: A fire that broke out in a restaurant at Abu Dhabi’s World Trade Centre Mall forced the retail venue to close for just over three hours on 1 May. The fire started in the kitchen of the Lebanese restaurant Tarbouche, in the Souk side of the mall at about 3pm, according to a report in The National newspaper. May 2015: A Dubai skyscraper just across the street from The Torch – which caught fire in February – was evacuated following a fire alert on 25 May. Firefighters attended the 77-storey Marina Pinnacle as residents made their way down to the ground floor. No-one was injured and the fire was soon under control, according to eyewitnesses who took to social media. May 2015: Masdar, the company behind the green-energy technology community in Abu Dhabi, said on 17 May that a fire had broke out at Masdar City for the second time in a week.\nGovernment-backed Masdar said that the fire started at about 1.30am and damaged parts of the company's temporary offices on the outskirts of the site. The AP news agency said another fire started in a heat exchanger linked to a solar energy pilot project at the site on the morning of 11 May. February 2015: Ten people died and eight were injured after flames swept through a commercial building in Mussaffah, Abu Dhabi on 20 February. The fire broke out in a two-storey building that contained seven shops and a car repair workshop on the ground floor, while the first floor was warehouse space turned into illegal accommodation for workers. It was one of worst fire incidents in the country's history. (Photo for illustrative purposes only). February 2015: Hundreds of people in Dubai were evacuated from one of the world's tallest residential buildings on 21 February when fire swept through The Torch, a 79-story skyscraper. Dubai Police said four people had suffered minor injuries and half a dozen fire trucks extinguished the blaze after several hours. (Photo from Twitter). Reported in Dec 2015: Work has begun to repair a 34-storey residential tower in Dubai that was partially destroyed by a fire in 2012.\nArabian Business understands that contractors quietly started work to repair the Tamweel Tower in Jumeirah Lakes Towers in early October, following a three-year wait.\nThe total cost of the work is understood to be $13.5 million.