WORLD NEWS

Overnight blaze in Taiwan engulfs building, kills 46 people

Oct 14, 2021, 5:26 AM
Firefighters search for victims from a residential building in the wake of a fire on October 14, 20...
Firefighters search for victims from a residential building in the wake of a fire on October 14, 2021 in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Additional deaths are feared as at least 14 were confirmed dead after a residential building fire in the southern Taiwanese city, United Daily News reported. (Photo by Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images)
(Photo by Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images)

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — A building fire that raged out of control for hours overnight in a major city in southern Taiwan left 46 people dead and at least 41 others injured, authorities said Thursday.

Flames and smoke billowed from the lower floors of the 13-story building as firefighters tried to douse the blaze from the street and aerial platforms in the city of Kaohsiung. A fire department statement described the fire, which started about 3 a.m., as “extremely fierce” and said several floors had been destroyed.

The death toll rose steadily during the day as rescue workers searched the combined commercial and residential building. By late afternoon, authorities said 32 bodies had been sent to the morgue, while a further 14 people who showed no signs of life were among 55 taken to the hospital. In Taiwan, official confirmation of a death is made at the hospital.

After daybreak, firefighters could be seen spraying water into the middle floors of the still smoldering building from high aerial platforms. One woman, who was not identified, said on Taiwanese TV that her 60-to-70-year-old parents were still inside.

The building’s age and piles of debris blocking access to many areas complicated search and rescue efforts, officials said, according to Taiwan’s Central News Agency.

Many of the residents of the 40-year-old building were elderly and lived alone in apartments as small as 13 square meters (140 square feet), local media said. The building had 120 residential units on the upper floors, as well as a closed movie theater, abandoned restaurants and karaoke clubs below them, the Central News Agency said.

Fire extinguishers had been installed last month, but only three per floor because the residents could not afford to pay more, the United Daily News, a major newspaper, reported.

The fire appeared to have started on the ground floor, Taiwanese media said.

The United Daily News said that investigators were focusing on a first-floor tea shop whose owner reportedly fought with his girlfriend earlier on Wednesday. They had not ruled out arson, the newspaper said.

A 1995 fire at a nightclub in Taichung, Taiwan’s third-largest city, killed 64 people in the country’s deadliest such disaster in recent times.

KSL 5 TV Live

Top Stories

World News

FILE: This photo provided by the fire brigade of the Gironde region (SDIS 33) shows firefighters un...
Associated Press

Wildfire in southwestern France: 8,000 people evacuated

The blaze forced the evacuation of about 8,000 people and destroyed at least sixteen houses.
21 hours ago
FILE (Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

London kids to be offered polio shot after more virus found

Children ages 1-9 in London were made eligible for booster doses of a polio vaccine after the disease was found in multiple parts of the city.
21 hours ago
Workers assemble laptop computer on the assembly line at Hasee Computer company's manufacturing cen...
Rishi Iyengar, CNN Business

The next frontier in the tech battle between the US and China

A new battleground is emerging: the components that power our smartphones, computers, automobiles and home appliances.
21 hours ago
Flinders Street railway
station...
Tara Subramaniam, CNN

Australian landmarks glow pink to honor Olivia Newton-John

The Sydney Opera House will turn pink on Wednesday to honor Olivia Newton-John, the singer and "Grease" star who died on Monday.
21 hours ago
In this image, taken Monday, Aug. 8, 2022 by environmental group Sea Shepherd, shows a Beluga whale...
Associated Press

Stranded whale euthanized after removal from French river

A beluga whale that captured French hearts when it showed up in the Seine River had to be euthanized Wednesday after it was successfully removed from the French waterway.
21 hours ago
The star of late actor Olivia Newton-John is adorned with flowers and photographs on the Hollywood ...
Tara Subramaniam, CNN

‘Grease’ co-stars, friends and fans pay tribute to Olivia Newton-John

Hollywood icons joined fans worldwide to mourn the loss of Olivia Newton-John, the Australian singer and "Grease" star, who died Monday at her ranch in Southern California at age 73.
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

tips how to quit smoking...

7 Tips How to Quit Smoking | Quitting Smoking Might be One of the Hardest Things You Ever Do but Here’s Where You Can Start

Quitting smoking cigarettes can be incredibly difficult. Here are 7 tips how to quit smoking to help you on your quitting journey.
Photo: Storyblocks...
Blue Stakes of Utah 811

Blue Stakes of Utah 811: 5 Reasons To Call 811 Before You Dig When Working in Your Yard

Call before you dig. Even at home, you could end up with serious injuries or broken utilities just because you didn't call Blue Stakes of Utah 811.
Days of...
Days of '47 Rodeo

TRIVIA: How well do you know your rodeo? Take this quiz before you go to the Days of ’47!

The Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo presented by Zions Bank is a one-of-a-kind Gold Medal Rodeo being held July 20-23, 25 at 7:30 PM. The Days of ’47 Rodeo How well do you know your rodeo trivia? Take the quiz to test your know-all before heading out to the Days of ’47 Rodeo at the […]
cyber security through multi factor authentication setup...
Les Olson IT

How multi factor authentication setup helps companies stay safe

Multi factor authentication (MFA) setup is an important security measure that every company should implement for their workers. It’s also wise to install it for your personal and home accounts.
...
Lighting Design

Check out these stunning lamps with stained glass shades

Lamps with stained glass shades are statement pieces that are more than simply aesthetic. They also meet a functional requirement: to light up a room.
Address Bar of internet browser shows internet access...
AARP Utah

Utah voters 50+ support increased access to Internet

The AARP surveyed Utah voters aged 50 plus about internet access and if they support the expansion of broadband, especially in rural areas currently lacking it.
Overnight blaze in Taiwan engulfs building, kills 46 people