Fire breaks out at downtown construction site; no fatalities

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Fire breaks out at downtown construction site; no fatalities

A fire broke out yesterday morning at the construction site of Chungmuro Residence & Hotel in Myeongdong, downtown Seoul, injuring at least 13, police officials said.

No fatalities were reported and the fire was contained in about an hour.

Forty-three construction workers were immediately evacuated to the rooftop of the building after it caught fire, and roads between Myeongdong Cathedral and Namsan Tunnel No. 1 were blocked. All 13 injured were transported to a nearby hospital for smoke inhalation, authorities said.

“We think the blaze was due to a worker’s negligence during a welding operation in the first basement floor,” said a firefighter who was at the site. “Smoke soon filled the entire building, so we evacuated everyone to the rooftop and then escorted them down to the ground.”

Thirty-nine fire trucks and 141 firefighters and emergency workers were mobilized to the scene.

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