Disasters & Accidents

At least 8 killed in fire in south India

New Delhi, Sep 13 (EFE).- At least 8 people were killed and 10 were injured in a fire that began at a sales showroom of electric-motorbikes in south India, a police official told EFE on Tuesday.

Chandana Deepti, the deputy commissioner of police in Secunderabad – the city in the southern state of Telangana where the incident took place – confirmed the number of casualties on Tuesday.

She told reporters that as per the preliminary probe, the blaze began at an e-bike showroom situated under a hotel due to a short circuit in one of the vehicles’ batteries, which triggered a chain reaction.

Most of the victims in the hotel fell unconscious due to smoke, while videos published on social media showed several people jumping from the building’s windows to escape the fire.

The incident comes in the wake of several recent cases of electric motorbikes and cars catching fire in different parts of India, which has led to authorities announcing stricter safety regulations for these vehicles’ batteries.

Fires, collapses and other similar accidents are frequent in India, often due to the precarious state of infrastructure and a lack of maintenance, factors that are fueled by corruption and illegal practices.

The last major fire incident in the country took place on Aug. 1, when at least 5 people were killed and 11 were injured in a blaze at a private hospital in the central state of Madhya Pradesh.

According to the latest available official data, 9,329 fires were recorded in India in 2020 – spread over government buildings, schools, residences and other places – in which 9,110 people died and 468 were injured. EFE

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