Three left in a critical condition after fire guts Hong Kong flat

The blaze was not suspicious and it may have been caused by an electrical appliance fault

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 01 April, 2017, 12:32pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 01 April, 2017, 11:25pm

Three people, including two children, remained in a critical condition on Saturday night after a fire broke out in a public housing estate in the New Territories.

Fire burned through the second floor flat in Tin Yan Estate, Tin Shui Wai, at 7am on Saturday. About 100 people were evacuated from the building, with fire services extinguishing the blaze in an hour.

A video shot by a resident showed smoke billowing out of the flat window while firefighters rescued a child from a neighbouring residence.

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A Fire Services Department spokeswoman said the fire was not suspicious and that it may have been caused by an electrical appliance fault.

A resident claimed the fire was caused by a phone charger that had overheated during the night, local media reported.

“I saw smoke, lots of it. It reached all the way up to the 4th and 5th floor,” the Tin Yan Estate resident told broadcaster i-Cable.

“I saw the woman poke her head out of the window. She shouted: Help! Come and save me!” the resident said.

At least 12 people, including four children, were rushed to hospital, a government spokesman said. Three of the injured – a 49- year-old man, a 10-year-old girl and 12-year-old girl – were still in a critical condition on Saturday night.

Two women, 38 and 44 remained in a serious condition.

Local media reported that one man had suffered burns in the blaze and that most others were conscious when they were taken to hospital for smoke inhalation.

Nine fire trucks and 12 ambulances with more than 70 emergency personnel were dispatched to the scene.

There are about 3,300 households in the nine blocks of Tin Yan Estate, according to the Housing Authority.