Thursday, 12 October 2023, 06:53
A mother and three of her children, aged 14, 12 and 11, died in a fire in a squatted building in the early hours of Wednesday morning in Vigo, a city on the northwest coast of Spain. Another of her children is said to have been saved. Nine people were also injured in the blaze, one of them seriously, and have been hospitalised, La Voz de Galicia reported.
Startled neighbours have claimed that the fire was started intentionally. "We heard the dog barking and went to the doorway to see what was happening, there was smoke and we heard footsteps," said two of the women who had to be evacuated. They said that they suspect a person who allegedly started a fire on the ground floor a few days ago.
When asked if the fire could be intentional, the councillor responsible for security, Patricia Rodríguez, appealed for calm. "It is true that these are situations in which we naturally get very nervous, we look for culprits and it is human that family members and friends and the people closest to us are anxious and think these kinds of questions, but the best thing is to let the professionals work," Rodríguez said.
The councillor said that around ten people were taken to health centres for smoke inhalation and other personal injuries. The rest of the people affected by the fire were attended to by the social and emergency services, who are looking to rehouse them.
Speaking to the media, Rodríguez said that 112 received a call at around 4am about a fire at the entrance to the building, in which there were approximately 30 people inside. The councillor said that within five minutes of the alert the firefighters were working to extinguish the fire, which they were able to control "effectively and as quickly as possible".
The fire happened on Calle Alfonso X el Sabio, and was attended to by Emergencia Sanitaria de Galicia-061, Vigo's fire brigade, National Police and Local Police. Psychologists from the Official College of Psychology of Galicia, specialised in dealing with emergency situations, were also informed of the incident.
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