Fire at Belgrade's Chinese shopping center contained-Xinhua

Fire at Belgrade's Chinese shopping center contained

Source: Xinhua

Editor: huaxia

2024-01-24 21:50:45

BELGRADE, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- A blaze that broke out at a Chinese shopping mall in Serbia's capital Belgrade early Wednesday has been contained and no injuries were reported, the Serbian Ministry of Interior said in a press release.

But efforts to fully extinguish the fire are ongoing, said the ministry.

Details regarding the cause of the fire and damages incurred to the shopping center remain undisclosed.

A total of 76 firefighters and 25 fire engines were deployed in the massive operation to extinguish the flames. Moreover, the helicopter unit deployed three helicopters, pouring down 71 tonnes of water.

Luka Causic, head of the emergency sector, described the operation as exceptionally challenging due to the presence of flammable materials. "The fire escalated rapidly this morning at around 6:57 a.m. Our first units were on site within minutes, but the fire had already spread considerably."

Causic said that police units have stopped Chinese merchants from entering the site to salvage their goods due to the risk of gas cylinder explosions. "Our primary concern is safety, and we aim to salvage what we can from the exterior of these buildings."

Causic recalled a similar incident at this location in 2021, where approximately 200 of 360 stores were saved from a blaze.

Chinese Ambassador to Serbia Li Ming visited the site on Wednesday, expressing thanks for the Serbian authorities' prompt response.