2 children among 5 killed in Sharjah apartment blaze
Two children were among five people who were killed after a fire broke out in their apartment in Sharjah at 3 am on Monday. The two children are believed to have died of suffocation, according to preliminary investigations. However, the victims were living in different apartments.
Eight seriously suffocated residents of the building have been admitted to the Kuwait Hospital.
The five deceased included a Moroccan woman (38) and her two children, aged 4 and 6. The other two were one Indian man (35) and a Pakistani woman (40). Nine civil defence and police officials also suffocated as they fought the blaze and had to be taken to the hospital for first-aid.
Preliminary investigation revealed that the fire broke out in the air-conditioner of a flat on the first floor that was occupied by some bachelors. As soon as it broke out at 3am, the two bachelors inside fled.
The smoke from the fire spread to the apartments on the second and third floors, suffocating their tenants to death.
Salman Shafiq, whose sister is the friend of the Pakistani woman, Ghazal, who died in the fire said that they had just met on Friday.
“My sister who has flown out of the UAE, called me this morning and asked me to check on Ghazal who was not answering her phone,” he told Khaleej Times. Salman then drove down from Abu Dhabi check where Ghazal’s death was confirmed. Ghazal was married but living alone. Her brother, who is based in Dubai, is still unreachable and her car remains parked on its usual spot.
According to employees of a nearby supermarket, the deceased Indian man was around 35 years old and was living alone after sending his family back home to UP. His absence was felt when he did not respond to calls. His company Arabian Oasis sent their representatives to check on him, said the supermarket staff.
Abdullah, a worker at a supermarket, said the Arab lady who died used to come down every morning to take her two children to school in her Nissan Murang, which was seen parked just outside the supermarket. The woman was in her 40’s.
The fire broke out in the first-floor apartment in Al Butina on Monday morning after which the tenants of the building were evacuated, a senior official confirmed to Khaleej Times.
Colonel Sami Khamis Al Naqbi, Director of the Sharjah Civil Defence, said the apartment was gutted in the fire.
Brig Mohammed Rashid Bayat, director of police operations department said that there is no criminal motive behind the fire. However, the cause of the fire is still unknown.