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Sun 2 Apr 2017 08:16 AM

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Smoke from fire near Dubai Mall billows over city

Civil defence services rescued four people who were trapped

Smoke from fire near Dubai Mall billows over city
(Image: Dubai Media Office)

Clouds of smoke billowed over central Dubai on Sunday after a fire burned for several hours in a residential tower under construction near the city's largest shopping mall.

The blaze erupted around 6:30 am (0230 GMT) at the complex, which is near the Dubai Mall and a hotel ravaged by fire on New Year's Eve in 2015, authorities said

Witnesses told Arabian Business that the police have cordoned off the area.

Civil defence services rescued four people who were trapped by the fire, including one in serious condition, Lieutenant Colonel Ahmed Ateej told Dubai television.

The Dubai government said that firefighting crews had brought the blaze under control.

In a tweet by Dubai Police, Major-General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, Commander-in-Chief confirmed the fire in a building under construction on Boulevard Street has been brought under control.

Dubai Media Office tweeted saying ambulance units were at the site but there were no reports of any casualties yet.

Routes have been closed to the Mohamed Rashid Boulevard from the intersection of Dubai Mall Cinema with the police calling on motorists to use alternative roads.

The building was being constructed by real estate giant Emaar.

The property has three towers each 60 floors high and had been due to be completed in April 2018.

Major fires have hit Dubai high-rises in recent years and spread quickly, mostly due to flammable material used in cladding, a covering or coating used on the side of the buildings.

On December 31, 2015 a huge blaze ripped through the luxury Address Downtown Hotel, only a few hours before a fireworks display nearby.

It sparked panic and was broadcast live worldwide, but only injured 16 people.

In July last year, a fire gutted the 75-storey Sulafa tower in Dubai marina, with the flames spreading up quickly at least 15 floors of the building.

In 2012, a huge blaze gutted the 34-storey Tamweel Tower in the nearby Jumeirah Lake Towers district. It was later revealed to have been caused by a cigarette butt thrown into a bin. 

* with additional reporting from AFP

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Shanti 3 years ago

Why so many fire accidents happening in this country? How safe it is to be residents of these buildings? We, the innocent common public, just have to pay ENORMOUS amount of rent that too for a year without knowing the real construction quality of these buildings. Its only cosmetics and no real standards are set here it seems. Its a growing serious concern to live here. Also want to know the real commitments and responsibilities of these landlords / agents towards the tenants. What is law prevailing to protect the tenants and their belongings in a fully occupied building? This one is under construction, so there may not be occupants and also happened at 6:30AM, so full workers may not be present I guess. So lives are saved. It looks very unsafe here.

Saddened 3 years ago

Shanti, if you are this worried and scared about living in the UAE, i'm pretty sure you can leave whenever you want. To answer your question about the commitments and responsibilities in fire cases, it is the tenants responsibility to insure his/her furniture, belongings, jewellery etc... the landlord insures the units only.

RAK 3 years ago

I think the reader's comments were regarding the rights as tenants in the case of fire or another incident that may leave the residents out of accommodation for a while. Do they get the rent back? etc.

Zemin Rofoldo 3 years ago

Shanti has a valid concern, the spate of recent fires raises real safety concerns for residents, but Civilian Safety departments have done a good job, but there is a feeling more needs to be done on prevention front. Landlords do have a duty to keep buildings up to code and safety standards

Telcoguy 3 years ago

And I guess this is why building codes regarding fire safety had to be reviewed. That it would be the owners paying for an expensive retrofitting was clear from the beginning, and it was hidden costs like this why I was very critical of investing in real estate in Dubai.

I miss all the people who not so long ago claimed this would not happen.