Massive fire at Bangladesh juice factory kills 52, injures 30

Bangladeshi police said Friday that a massive fire at a juice factory in Bangladesh killed at least 52 people, forcing trapped workers to jump off the top floors to save their lives.

About 30 people were injured and hundreds of distraught relatives and other workers waited anxiously outside the food factory as the fire continued to rage.

The inferno was the latest to tarnish Bangladesh's safety record marred by a series of disasters in industrial complexes and apartment buildings.

In February 2019 at least 70 people died when an inferno ripped through Dhaka apartments where chemicals were illegally stored.

The latest fire broke out at Hashem Food and Beverage factory in Rupganj, an industrial town outside Dhaka, on Thursday afternoon and was still raging almost 24 hours later.

Police initially gave a toll of three dead but it rose dramatically as firefighters reached the upper floors and started bringing out dozens of bodies of trapped workers.

The charred victims were piled in a fleet of ambulances to take them to mortuaries amid anguished shouts and tears from people watching in the streets.

Police dispersed hundreds of people who blocked nearby roads and clashed with officers.

Some of the more than 30 people injured jumped from the upper floors as flames quickly engulfed the six-story building, police inspector Sheikh Kabirul Islam said.

Emergency services were battling to put out the fire on the fifth and sixth floors. Firefighters rescued 25 people from the roof of the factory that made noodles, fruit juices and candy.


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