Gulf | Saudi Arabia

25 people killed in Saudi Arabia wedding fire

Victims were electrocuted as they attempted to flee through only exit

  • By Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief
  • Published: 10:58 October 31, 2012
  • Gulf News

Sifting through debris after a fire in Saudi Arabia
  • Image Credit: AlRiyadh.com
  • Residents sift through debris following a fire at a wedding in Saudi Arabia that killed 25 people.

Manama: A fire in Saudi Arabia has killed 25 people and injured at least 30 more, a civil defence officer said.

Most of the victims in Tuesday evening’s fire were women and children attending a wedding in Abqaiq, 60 kilometeres southwest of the Dhahran-Dammam-Khobar metropolitan area in eastern Saudi Arabia.

The police have launched an investigation while efforts are exerted to identify the victims.

Early reports indicate that the fire started when an electricity pole fell on the building and caused panic among the guests who attempted to escape from the only exit.

A report in the Arabic daily Al Riyadh said that the fire broke out in a high voltage power transformer that fell on the building iron door and electrocuted those who touched it as they tried to run out.

Sabq news site said that many of the victims were electrocuted as they attempted to leave the building.

In line with traditions in the Gulf, wedding celebrations in Saudi Arabia are segregated.

In 2009, a wedding tent fire caused the death 57 women and children in Kuwait. The fire was started allegedly by a disgruntled 23-year-old woman who wanted to ruin the marriage of her husband with a second wife.

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