This is why you’ve been hearing sirens this afternoon. A terrible fire has broken out in an apartment block
called the Jiaozhou Building (胶州大厦) at 707 728 Jiaozhou Lu Building 1, near the corner of Yuyao Lu in Jing’an. The huge fire is reportedly 10 stories high and the blaze started with the scaffolding. Ambulances have already been called to the scene but photos show there are trapped workers in the building. We’ll be following this story closely as more details unfold. Please send tips to [email protected].
Update 1 3:45: From Xin Min On the 28th floor, there are around a dozen residents waiting to be rescued. The fire started somewhere between the 10th and 12th floor. The police have cordoned off the surrounding streets. Yuyao Lu, Changde Lu, Changping Lu have all been affected. According to local residents, the building houses quite a few retired teachers.
Update 2 3:55: 16 injured residents have been sent to the hospital. According to an eyewitness, Su’s Bakery and Cafe, located at the bottom of the building has also been burnt severely.
Update 3 4:02pm: Firemen are still working to put out the flames which have completely consumed the building. We’ve also got some information on the building, again from Xin Min: The residence building was constructed in January of 1998 by Xin Rong construction company (欣荣房地产开发公司) and is home to about approximately 500 households.
Update 4 4:06pm: Sources say people are jumping from the building. Smoke can be seen as far away as Xujiahui.
Update 5 4:15pm: Three police helicopters are circling overhead to help with rescue efforts trying to lower a rope to the stranded residents.
Update 6 4:20pm: From forum posters: Helicopter has landed on the neighboring building. Water from the firehose stretches out only enough to reach the 5th floor. More and more ambulance and firemen arriving on scene.
Update 7 4:25pm: The most immediate fire hydrant was not enough so the firemen have run to use the hydrant on the next street over. More news sources are reporting that the apartment building is staff quarters for retired teachers.
Update 8 4:52pm: Workers trapped on scaffolding. Let’s hope they make it out of there safely.
Update 9 4:53pm: Sina says the injured residents have been sent to Jing’an Hospital (静安中心医院) There are 10 plus fire trucks and ambulances each at the scene.
Update 10, 4:55pm: @ChinaPaul tweets: “hearing reports of a lot of deaths. A lot of older people were in the building. No way they all could have gotten out.”
Update 11 4:57pm: Sina video of the fire
Update 12 5:09pm: Eyewitness source says police are now pushing bystanders back, “building may not last.”
Update 13 5:11pm: A newspaper is now also saying that people have jumped to escape the fire.
Update 14 5:12pm: Sina poster reports seeing people jump from either the 3rd or 4th floor.
Update 15 5:20pm: Shanghai Daily tweets “90 PEOPLE RESCUED. SOME STILL TRAPPED IN BUILDING. 5 DEAD.”
Update 16 5:25pm: It’s rumored that 37 people have been injured.
Update 17 5:33pm: Tianya commenter: “看到楼顶上戴着安全帽的民工们一次又一次的伸出头来求救，直到最后不再伸出，他们当时是在承受怎样一种煎熬,眼看着好几条生命在眼皮底下逝去去无能为力，悲伤” I saw the workers wearing the hard hats on the roof reach out their hands for help again and again until finally they stopped reaching out anymore. They were being tormented, [I’m] personally seeing all this happen under my nose but not able to do anything, tragic.
Update 18 5:45pm: Yi Cai has a video of a man successfully being rescued.
Update 19 5:52pm: News.163: The fire from the 20th floor and below has been more or less contained. There are 20-30 fire trucks on scene and 3 fire water canons aimed at the building but it doesn’t look like it’s having much of an effect. The building has turned completely black and bits and pieces are falling off from time to time.
Update 20 5:57pm: We are adding photos to our gallery as we get them. Most right now come from former Shanghaiist contributor Peijin Chen, who lives across from the building on fire. Please send your photos to [email protected].
Update 21 6:01pm: TV Channel CBN live interview with a doctor at the hospital says most of the patients are in stable condition, injured include both young and old.
Update 22 6:14pm: CCTV witnesses say they heard explosions but whether the explosions were the cause of the fire or came from the fire is still unclear.
Update 23 6:21pm:TV report confirms 8 people dead and 52 injured of which 1 is in intensive care. Most of the blaze has been put out though fire can still be seen through a few windows.
Update 24 6:32pm: Shanghai Daily has 12 confirmed deaths.
Update 25 6:50pm: We have added more photos to our gallery, including eight from Daniele Mattioli. More photos from Daniele can be seen here. Thanks, Daniele.
Update 26 7:07pm: Shanghai Daily tweets that the fire was put out by 7pm. (Although there are conflicting reports.)
Update 27 7:09pm: Video of fire before it was put out by Karl Loo:
Update 28 7:37pm: Our man on the ground, Peijin Chen, texts us, “they just took out another body”… “one was alive the other was dead”… “and another dead one”. Looks like we can expect the death toll to continue rising.
Update 29 9:28pm: The Associated Press reports “a witness said building materials caught fire, and the blaze spread to scaffolding and then to the 28-story building.” The workers were reportedly installing “energy-saving insulation” when the fire started. A reported 80 fire trucks were called to the scene.
Update 30 11:13pm: Boing Boing has a Big Picture-esque photo gallery entitled “Towering Inferno.”
Update 31 00:23am: The death toll has leapt to 42, and may rise further. What a sad day.
More Shanghaiist coverage of the fire here.