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3 dead, 20 injured in NW China building fire

Updated: 2012-12-23 01:11
( Xinhua)

YAN'AN,  Shaanxi - Three people were killed and 20 others injured after a fire engulfed a commercial building in Northwest China's Shaanxi province Saturday morning, local authorities said.

As of 9 pm, two bodies had been retrieved by firefighters but the victims' identities were yet to be identified, according to the press office of the Yan'an municipal government, where the accident took place.

3 dead, 20 injured in NW China building fire

Firefighters try to extinguish a fire that broke out in a commercial building in Yan'an, Northwest China's Shaanxi province, Dec 22, 2012. [Photo/Xinhua]

The fire broke out in the 14-story World Trade Building in the city's downtown at about 4:30 am.  As of 4 pm, the number of injured rose to 20 and were all in a stable condition, according to sources with a local hospital.

Three of the 20 injured people were staff members of a hotel located on the upper floors of the building while the rest were all guests, said Liu Guangzhong, deputy head of the hospital.

The ages of the injured people range from 7 to 51. Twelve of them suffered from burns and the other eight had minor carbon monoxide poisoning, Liu said.

About 50 people staying at the hotel in the building were evacuated. One of the security guards who helped in the evacuation remains missing, said Jia Xueqi, an officer with the city's fire department.

More than 460 firemen and police brought the fire under control as of Saturday afternoon, Jia said.

About 1,700 residents living next to the building have been evacuated so far, Jia added.

The cause of the fire is being investigated.

3 dead, 20 injured in NW China building fire

A fire broke out in a commercial building in Yan'an, Northwest China's Shaanxi province Saturday morning. [Photo/CFP]

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