A fire in a 13-story building in Kaohsiung, Taiwan’s second-largest city, left at least 25 people dead and dozens injured during the night, according to aid services.
According to the Associated Press (AP), the fire started around 3:00 am, when witnesses heard an explosion.
A spokesman for the Kaohsiung fire department said 55 people had been transported to the hospital, including 14 with no signs of life. In Taiwan, official confirmation of death can only be made at the hospital, according to the AP.
At least 11 people were transported directly to the morgue, said the head of firefighters at the scene, according to the AP.
The fire, “extremely violent”, destroyed several floors of the building, according to firefighters.
The building is about 40 years old, with shops on the lower levels and apartments higher up, according to an official statement quoted by the AP.