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Posted On: 21 February 2015 08:21 am
Updated On: 12 November 2020 02:14 pm

Fire rips through Dubai skyscraper

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A fire has swept through the Torch skyscraper in Dubai, one of the tallest residential buildings in the world.

Strong winds helped the blaze to spread across the 336.1m (1,105ft) high building in the marina district.

One eyewitness told the BBC "there was debris flying everywhere, falling into neighbouring buildings". The fire was later brought under control.

It is not known what caused the blaze. Hundreds of people were evacuated and there are no reports of any casualties.

'Very scared'

Footage posted on social media showed what looked like molten glass and pieces of masonry falling down.

"In an hour-and-a-half the fire is almost out on about 60 floors, it looks like mostly the outer apartments that are damaged," eyewitness Rola told the BBC.

She said it looked like the blaze started on the 50th floor.

"It's an iconic building, people were out on balconies all around it watching - even though it was 3am (23:00 GMT Saturday)," she said.

"The civil defence came really quickly and they have said there were no casualties, everybody was told to evacuate in a timely manner and we think everybody is OK."

Cyrille Sekretev, who lives in the nearby Princess Tower, later told the BBC that all the residents of that building had been asked to evacuate but were later allowed to return.

"I saw four floors on fire, then 20, then 60. It was very windy, so that really didn't help the situation. We were very scared that the wind would spread the fire."

American resident RJ Morlock told Associated Press: "I was really surprised they got it under control pretty quickly. It looked like it was going to go up."

The 79-storey Torch skyscraper opened in 2011.

In 2012, a fire swept through the 34-storey Tamweel Tower in Dubai.

No-one was injured, however hundreds of residents were left homeless after the blaze which police said was caused by a cigarette butt.

Photo by Rhea Saran (twitter @Really_Rhea)