Fire rages at Torch tower, Dubai. Image Credit: Digby Taylor/GN Broadcasting

Dubai: Major General Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina, Dubai Police Chief said that there wasn’t any criminal suspicion in the Torch building fire.

He said the fire did not result in serious damages.

The fire, which took place at 2:30am on Saturday morning in Dubai Marina was contained and brought under control by Dubai Civil Defence, said Al Mazeina, who was at the scene of the fire.

 Major General Khalil Ebrahim Al Mansouri, Assistant to the Dubai Police Chief for Criminal Investigation Affairs, 20 apartments balconies were damaged in the fire.
Adding that four passer-bys sustained minor injuries, and were treated immediately by ambulances on the spot.

The cause of fire is currently under investigation by fire experts at the Dubai Police criminal investigation department and they are waiting on the fire report to determine the cause of the fire. Developer Select Group said that residents have already returned to their homes. 

No casualties in Torch Tower fire

Ten residents suffered from suffocation due to smoke inhalation and small abrasions when the Torch Tower at Dubai Marina erupted in fire early on Saturday morning, an official said. No major injuries or deaths were reported.

A massive fire engulfed the 86-storey tower at Dubai Marina, prompting residents to evacuate the 352-metre residential tower. The control room of the Civil Deffence was alerted at around 1:49am. The fire was brought under control at around 4:24am, a spokesperson from the Dubai Civil Defence said.

“There were a total of 10 patients. One was a yellow patient, a pregnant lady who was having difficulty breathing. But that’s about it. The other nine patients suffered from smoke inhalation and small abrasions and we treated them on the scene. There were no major injuries or burns,” Mishal Abdul Kareem Mohammad, Acting Director of the Operations Department of the Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services, told Gulf News.

Police escort residents back to Torch Tower

The Civil Defense and Police officers are escorting residents who live between the sixth and the 20th floor back into the Torch Tower said Ahmed Al Atawi, 36 year-old Egyptian tenant.

Earlier this morning, residents were evacuated from The Torch Tower after a fire was said to have started on the 50th floor. Al Atawi told Gulf News that his main goal was to secure a safe exit for his wife and 11 month old child.

"Security guards knocked on our doors several times after the alarms started ringing, so we got dressed to leave," he said. "I couldn't think of anything else other than my wife and child so I grabbed our passports, I even left my phone upstairs and we headed to the exit."

Al Atawi spoke about the several drills and false alarms that take place throughout the year which left them doubting that there was an emergency when the fire alarm went off at 2am.

"We usually have all these false alarms so when I heard this one I thought I'll just carry on sleeping it's probably nothing," he said.

Residents resting on the 97th floor of Princess Tower (building across Torch Tower) (Maria Botros/Gulf News)

Four ambulance units plus the Disaster Bus were deployed along with medics to help civil defence officials manage the situation.

The cause of the fire is pending investigation. It appears to have started on the side of the tower facing Sufouh Street and spread on the front side of the tower, fanned by gusty winds pre-dawn Saturday.

One resident who wrote to Gulf News said the fire alarms did not go off automatically went the fire erupted. “The thing is me and my friend were the first two people whom realised building was on fire and we called the 999 at 1:50am and ran into our floor (30th) and rang on neighbors doors and bells and told them that building was on fire but still the fire alarm was not turned on,” the resident said.

“So we ran to the exit stairs and while we reached the 20th floor the alarm was still not turned on so I personally turned on the alarm manually by breaking the alarm button.”
The Torch tower, which has 676 apartments, is the 32nd tallest building in the world and the 10th in the UAE. It was completed in 2011 according to the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat.

The Port Saeed station of Civil Defence headed the operations, with the help of the Al Rashidiya, Al Hamriya, Al Quoz, Marina, and Al Barsha stations.