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A terrible fire has broken out in an 18-story apartment building in Milan, prompting fears that many people could be trapped inside.
It took 15 fire trucks and more than 100 members of emergency service personnel to extinguish the fire that broke out around 5:30 pm local time at the Torre dei Moro building in via Giacomo Antonini on the southern outskirts of Milan, home to dozens of families.
All tenants have reportedly been evacuated and safely accounted for, but firefighters are conducting a thorough search of the building to make sure no one has been trapped.
The emergency services checked twenty tenants at the scene for smoke inhalation, but so far no hospitalizations have been recorded.
15 fire engines and over 100 emergency service personnel were needed to extinguish the fire
The Torre dei Moro is a residential skyscraper measuring almost 200 feet tall, which was built as part of a regeneration project in the south of Milan.
Authorities reported that the fire destroyed many parts of the building almost completely, and the Italian police and fire service established a perimeter to ensure that a safe distance is maintained from the remains of the building.
Nearby buildings have not been damaged, but the building’s proximity to a fuel distribution system and neighboring houses has prompted more preventive evacuations as firefighters complete their checks.
Milan Mayor Beppe Sala arrived at the scene after the fire to inspect the damage and ensure the safety of the tenants and firefighters.
Sala said that so far no casualties had been reported in the fire, but added that some firefighters had suffered burns in their attempts to extinguish the flames.
“They are doing a commendable job, as always,” he said.
One of the building’s residents told Italian news website ANSA that residents were assured the panels
Meanwhile, one of the building’s residents told the Italian news website ANSA that residents were assured that the panels covering the building were fire resistant.
We were told that the panels covering the building were fireproof, instead they burned quickly like butter, ” he said.
“The technicians will do a check, but I remember perfectly that they told us that the panels were fire resistant.”
Firefighters believe the fire started on the upper floors, collapsing the windows on the building’s facade and generating a plume of smoke visible from miles away, but this has yet to be verified.
“It is difficult to make assumptions about how the fire started; it probably originated from the upper floors and it is not yet clear whether it started from the inside or the outside,” Sala said.
“What the firefighters are doing is breaking down one door after another starting from the lower floors, in very difficult working conditions and with oxygen cylinders, to see if there is anyone inside.”
Torre dei Moro Quicks and facts
- 15 fire engines were needed to extinguish the fire which took hold at 5:30pm
- The fire destroyed the Torre dei Moro building in the southern outskirts of Milan
- Tenants have been safely evacuated with no hospitalisations, but some firefighters sustained burns according to Milan’s mayor
- One resident said he had been assured that the building’s panels were fireproof
- Firefighters are continuing their search operation to ensure no one was trapped