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Nov 18 2012

Major fire at 1am guts JLT's Tamweel tower; Residents huddled on streets in despair

By Mily Chakrabarty

Hundreds on the streets after three towers evacuated
A massive fire broke out in the early hours of Sunday morning (around 2am) on the roof of the Tamweel Tower (Cluster U) in Dubai's Jumeirah Lake Towers (JLT).

"The blaze is not so much visible on the outside. But the flats seem to be burning right now," a JLT resident told Emirates 24|7.

Residents of the buildings could be seen huddled outside.

Some families who had managed to take their cars away from the building to a safe distance, were seen huddled inside their cars along with children, neighbours and elderly people, watching the fire slowly engulf the entire building.

Earlier, the fire alarms went up and woke the residents of the building and those in the neighbouring buildings.

Not only were the residents of the Tamweel tower evacuated, but the residents of the adjoining two Al Seef towers (of the same cluster) also evacuated as the blaze spread from top to the floors below.

The continuous ringing of fire alarms also woke up residents in the buildings of the nearby clusters.

An eyewitness told Emirates 24|7: "I stay four buildings away from Tamweel tower but the screeching alarm woke up me. When I looked out, I saw the fire engines and police patrol cars and then saw the rooftop on fire. It was a terrifying sight to behold."

Another eye witness told the website that huge slabs of concrete that fell off from the roof actually led to the spread the fire to different floors. Some pieces landed on the balconeys and spread the fire.

"The falling pieces of concrete fell on the ground below. A few of them fell on cars parked on the ground floor. The firefighters were hard placed to put them out but the falling concrete engandered their lives as well. I saw a couple of cars being gutted. "

In the morning around 6am, the apartments facing the Golf course were ablaze, while the other sides of the building seemed to be in the dark.

A resident who was evacuated at night took to social network and said: "Around 7 and it [fire] still wasnt doused out completely, think 10 or11th onward upward is completely destroyed."

Residents continued to be literally out on the streets as the civic officials kept the concerned residents out of harm's way.

Entry to certain sections of the community is restricted as of Sunday morning and police patrol cars were seen at every entrance of JLT, manning the traffic going towards the Tamweel tower.

© Emirates 24|7 2012


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