At least 70 dead in Bangladesh building fire

A view of a scene of a fire that broke out at a chemical warehouse in Dhaka Bangladesh

Deadly fire kills over 40 in Dhaka, death toll may rise

But the most serious threat come from the fact that residential buildings are used for commercial purposes, with ground floors serving as chemical and gas cylinder warehouses.

Fire control room official Mahfuz Riben told AFP that 69 people had been killed while Bangladesh's fire service chief Ali Ahmed said the death toll could rise further.

"It is unclear whether anyone who lived on the floors above (the place where the fire broke out) is alive", said Shamim Harun ur Rashid, a local police official.

Outside the gutted store, the road was strewn with charred vehicles, pieces of still-burning metal and plastics and hundreds of cans of body deodorant.

In this Wednesday, Feb. 20, 2019, photo, firefighters and local people help douse a fire in Dhaka, Bangladesh.

At least 70 people are dead and dozens more are injured following a warehouse fire in Bangladesh.

The blaze started late Wednesday night in one building and quickly spread to others, fire department Director General Brig.

"Our teams are working there, but numerous recovered bodies are beyond recognition".

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Chemical fire: Bangladesh's deadliest industrial blaze was in June 2010, when 117 people died in a fire that ripped through one of Dhaka's most densely populated areas. "Our people are using body bags to send them to the hospital morgue". Proceedings have dragged however, and prosecutors say a verdict could take five more years.

About 200 firefighters fought for more than five hours to bring the blaze under control.

The centuries-old Chawkbazar district has narrow streets and buildings very close to each other.

Dhaka city authorities launched a crackdown on chemical warehouses in residential areas following the blaze, but efforts to rein in the practice have waned in recent years.

Following the fire many people were seen looking for missing relatives at the nearby Dhaka Medical College Hospital, the Daily Star reported.

Some reports suggested numerous fatalities were pedestrians, shoppers or diners who died quickly as several gas cylinders exploded, and the fire engulfed nearby buildings very quickly.

The officials earlier said 37 fire fighting units were moved to the scene but narrow lanes made it hard for fire engines to reach the spot forcing the fire fighters to use long hose pipes to set off the blaze.

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