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Dozens Killed and Hundreds Burned in Bangladesh Depot Disaster

DHAKA, Bangladesh — At the very least 39 folks had been killed and a whole lot extra suffered burns when a fireplace at a container depot in Bangladesh set off a collection of explosions, officers stated on Sunday.

Many individuals had been in crucial situation in hospital burn wards, in keeping with native officers, who feared the loss of life toll would rise. By midday, firefighters had been nonetheless making an attempt to include the blaze, which started round 10:45 p.m. Saturday at B.M. Container Depot within the city of Sitakunda, about 10 miles from Chattogram, Bangladesh’s predominant port.

After the primary firefighters arrived, a big explosion rocked the depot, inflicting the flames to unfold. At the very least 5 firefighters had been killed in that blast, and 14 others had been wounded, officers stated. Extra explosions adopted, persevering with nicely into Sunday morning.

The reason for the catastrophe, at considered one of Bangladesh’s largest inland container depots, was not instantly clear. Makes an attempt to contact executives on the firm that runs the depot weren’t instantly profitable.

Shahadat Hossain, the senior authorities official for Sitakunda, stated that a considerable amount of hydrogen peroxide might have been saved on the depot, together with different items. “We can not say something additional proper now,” he stated.

A whole bunch of individuals had been admitted to Chittagong Medical School Hospital, stated Dr. Mohammed Elias Chowdhury, the civil surgeon for Chattogram, which is also referred to as Chittagong. “Lots of them are crucial,” he stated. “Some folks have 60 to 70 p.c burns on their our bodies.”

Pictures from the hospital confirmed wounded folks laid out on the ground, ready for therapy. Dr. Chowdhury stated all go away had been canceled for docs and different workers members on the hospital.

Hasan Mahmud Arafat, 25, a college scholar who volunteered to assist on the hospital, stated all beds within the burn models had been full and that ambulance sirens had blared all night time.

“I noticed 1000’s of individuals come to the hospital to donate blood,” he stated. “I noticed locals come to the hospital with hand followers — they had been fanning the sufferers who had been ready to get a mattress or who had been admitted to the makeshift beds.”

Mass-casualty fires have been a recurring drawback in Bangladesh. In July, a manufacturing unit hearth within the metropolis of Narayanganj killed at the least 51 folks.

Mujib Mashal contributed reporting from New Delhi.

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