19 bodies had been recovered from inside the burned building and At least six people died after jumped being scared from the 22-floor FR Tower in Dhaka on Thursday. Victims were burned or suffocated and as many people are receiving hospital treatment for severe injuries, the death toll may rise.
People were seen shouting for help from windows and several people were seen jumping off the building through broken glasses while some others tried to climb down using wires and railings but some of them eventually fell defying the rescuers’ call not to risk their lives.
Five military helicopters were used in the rescue efforts. The fire service workers were seen bringing out at least 40 people from the building by using ladders.
“We’ve rescued over 100 people. We are continuing the rescue operation to check if someone is still trapped or dead or injured. Dumping work will also continue,” SM Zulfiqar Rahman, a fire service director told.
The Air Force, Bangladesh Navy, police and the Fire Service Department are working together to rescue the people inside. Navy Officer Siraj said: “Three units of Bangladesh Navy are lending assistance.”
Bangladesh suffers frequently from major building fires, in part due to poor enforcement of regulations. The incident took place a little over a month after a fire killed at least 81 people in Old Dhaka’s Chawkbazar area.
“Nineteen fire-fighting units are working at the scene. Bangladesh navy and air force have also joined to fight the fire,” duty officer Mohammad Russel said from Dhaka’s central fire service control room.
The seventh to the 10th floors suffered the most damage. The fire service announced around 4:45 pm that the fire was under control.
Dhaka North Mayor Atiqul Islam and Dhaka South Mayor Mohammad Sayeed Khokon rushed to the site after hearing about the incident. Atiqul told, “ the building code appeared to have not been followed in the construction of the building”.
State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Enamur Rahman said “the tower had no fire extinguishing system”. The authorities were yet to find out the origin of the fire.