Fire breaks out at Dubai, United Arab Emirates hotel on New Year's Eve
Friday, January 1, 2016
A fire broke out at a high-rise hotel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (UAE) last night, apparently involving a large portion of the hotel. A crowd had gathered around The Address Hotel for the New Year’s celebration, but they were evacuated due to the fire. The cause of the fire was unclear, and there were conflicting reports on the number of people injured.
A thick column of smoke rose up from the hotel, and two large explosions occurred during the fire. The smoke obscured the nearby Burj Khalifa tower, the tallest building in the world, according to Nadia Huraimi, a BBC correspondent in Dubai at the time, even though the tower was brightly illuminated.
Witness reports said the fire caused people to run away in panic. Firetrucks were dispatched to the hotel, and according to what officials said at 11 p.m., the fire had mostly been controlled. Despite this, the fire continued past midnight. Officials said guests at The Address would be given accommodation at other hotels.
Reports on the number of people injured were conflicting. While officials said the fire injured sixteen people, lightly for the most part, an anonymous medic told Reuters the fire injured at least 60.
Despite the fire, a fireworks show for New Year's continued as planned at the Burj Khalifa even as the hotel burned.
- AP. "Dubai New Year's fireworks go ahead as fire engulfs highrise hotel" — CBC News, December 31, 2015
- "Fire engulfs Dubai hotel ahead of New Year celebrations" — BBC News Online, December 31, 2015