A devastating fire in Kazakhstan’s largest city, Almaty, claimed the lives of thirteen people on Thursday, as reported by the city’s emergencies department.
According to the Almaty police department, among the victims, nine were Kazakhs, two were from Russia, and two were from Uzbekistan. The fire erupted in the early morning, engulfing a three-story building housing 72 hostel guests.
The thirteen victims succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning, while the remaining 59 occupants managed to evacuate the premises.
Four individuals, including a student from India, sought medical assistance, as per information provided by Zakon.kz.
Almaty Mayor Erbolat Dosaev addressed the situation, stating, “In the corresponding act issued by the (Kazakhstan’s) Ministry of Health, it is forbidden to accommodate guests in basement premises.
It’s allowed to refurbish and bring it up to sanitary standards – but the question remains, how many people were accommodated there and why. Basement premises should be used for support – kitchen, storage, warehouse, and so on. Well, we will sort it out now, the investigation will make a decision.”
The cause of the fire remains unclear, prompting the government to establish a special commission to investigate the tragic incident.