Fire breaks out in Dubai Tower block

Fire breaks out in Dubai Tower block

No one was hurt and the fire was extinguished by around 3.40am, but hundreds of occupants had to flee as burning debris showered down the sides of the 337-metre-tall, 79-storey structure.

One video showed flaming debris falling from the skyscraper.

The Dubai Media Office said the fire "has been brought under control", adding that "cooling operations are underway".

They blamed the 2015 fire on the Tower's external cladding, which is flammable under specific conditions and does not prevent flames from spreading through windows as well as the interior of the building, the Telegraph said.

Despite being four times smaller than Dubai's Torch Tower, the fire at Grenfell Tower claimed more than 80 lives, with the death count expected to rise.

But the incident may revive questions about the safety of materials used on the exteriors of tall buildings across the wealthy Gulf region and beyond. Investigators then said the tower's exterior cladding, made of aluminum panels with combustible plastic cores, helped spread the flames, the New York Times reported.

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An investigation by Torch Tower's management found that most of the damage from the 2015 fire was to the cladding.

Dubai skyscrapers are equipped with smoke-free, fire-proof safety zones that allow residents to safely exit the building in case of fire, while simultaneously allowing firefighters to combat the blaze and limit damage.

Authorities in Dubai say they have put out a multistory blaze that engulfed one of the world's tallest residential skyscrapers shortly after midnight, affecting more than 40 floors.

It's the second massive fire at the tower in just over two years.

"You never think it's going to happen to you", said Alireza Aletomeh, a resident of the tower. In that blaze, as in others in Dubai in recent years, residents escaped without major injury. The AP mentions that an inferno broke out at a 63-story luxury hotel in Dubai on New Year's Eve in 2016.

However, buildings constructed before 2013 are exempt, and Torch Tower - constructed in 2007 - continues to use the flammable cladding.

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