Two people were injured and taken to the hospital for treatment.
A major fire erupted at a skyscraper construction site in Hong Kong on Thursday night. According to South China Morning Post (SCMP), the blaze broke out at the site of The Mariners' Club redevelopment project in the densely populated Tsim Sha Tsui district at about 11pm.
A video doing rounds on social media showed multiple floors of the building engulfed in flames, sending burning debris flying through the air as firefighters worked to contain the blaze. According to SCMP, two people, believed to be motorists, were injured and taken to the hospital for treatment. Their conditions are unknown.
Watch the video below:
As per the BBC, the fire may have started on the bamboo scaffolding on the outside of the building. But there has been no official confirmation of the cause.
The police said that around 170 residents were evacuated from nearby buildings and were relocated to a safe distance. Deputy Chief Fire Officer Keung Sai-ming stated that a lack of proper fire safety equipment on the building site and the massive area involved, as well as the dry and windy weather, ensured the blaze spread quickly and took a long time to put out.
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Authorities will now establish a task force to investigate the cause of the blaze and study how to improve fire safety at construction sites, the cops said. The safety of other structures and machines on the site would be referred to other government departments for follow-up action, they added.
As per SCMP, the blaze was put out almost after 9 hours. Around 25 firefighters and other rescue personnel were deployed in the operations. Two jets and three breathing apparatus teams were also mobilised.
Notably, the building was billed as a 42-storey "harbourside icon" in the making, intended to house the historic Mariners' Club and a new hotel, according to the website of its developer, the Empire Group.