11, including 3 children, killed in Czech building fire
Published: 12:34 PM, 9 August 2020
At least 11 people, including three children, were killed as a fire broke out an apartment building in the northern Czech Republic on Saturday. Besides, at least 10 people including two members of the fire service were injured.
Among the deceased, five were killed after jumping from an 11th-floor balcony in an attempt to escape the blaze.
News Agency Al Jazeera reported that the fire originated in a 13-storey concrete block of flats in the city of Bohumin on the Czech-Polish border, some 300km (190 miles) east of the capital, Prague.
It has been initially thought that the fire was started deliberately in the building that belongs to the Bohumin Town Hall.
Citing eyewitness, BBC reported that a man was handcuffed at the scene after calmly admitting to police he had started the blaze. Police refused to comment on those claims but they have confirmed that one person was arrested.
"The fire was very quick to develop, which is not normal. A fire like that typically affects one room, but this one hit the entire flat, all the rooms are burnt down," said Vladimír Vlček, the head of the Moravian-Silesian fire brigade.
Lukas Popp, a spokesman for local firefighters, said: "Our firefighters were on the site really fast but during the action, five people jumped out of the 12th-storey window and died."
"My deepest condolences to the bereaved," he said. "I wish a speedy recovery to the injured firefighter," Interior Minister Jan Hamacek told Czech public radio.