A fire spread inside a boarding school, killing at least 21 students and two adults early Thursday morning in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Officials say that this is the worst fire disaster to strike the country in two decades. Firefighters quickly responded to the blaze at a three-story school near Jalan Datuk Keramat. When firemen arrived nearly 90 percent of the building was ablaze. Most of the victims are between the ages of 13 and 17.
“The firemen could hear cries for help from inside the building,” spokesman Soiman Jahid said. “The first team from (the) fire station managed to save five of the children from the lower level.”
Officials say that bodies were stacked on top of each other, one after the other. There is speculation that a stampede may have ensued during the fire.
A total of nine fire engines arrived on the scene to put out the blaze at Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah boarding school alongside the Klang river. The teenage victims of this huge inferno were sent over Kuala Lumpur Hospital. Seven people suffered injuries relating to the fire, while 11 who were rescued also escape harm from the flames.
When And Where Did The Fire Happen?
The blaze broke out at 5:15 AM (local time) at the Islamic boarding school. Within an hour, the fire was extinguished.
A fire and rescue spokesperson said, “Based on our information at the moment, 25 students and teachers have died in the fire. Our personnel are still at the scene. It really does not make sense for so many to die in the fire. I think it is one of the country’s worst fire disasters in the past 20 years. We are now investigating the cause of the fire.”
Loga Bala Mohan, the government’s federal territories deputy minister, said, “We sympathise with the families. It is one of the worst fires involving so many lives. We urgently want the authorities to quickly probe the cause of the deadly fire so that we will be able to prevent future disasters.”
A total of 211 fires broke out in Malaysia since 2015.
The worst fire in Malaysian history dates back to 1989 in Kedah, when 27 students at an all-girls school died after a blaze erupted and spread to eight nearby wooden hostels.