23 dead in religious school fire in Malaysia

15 September, 2017, 00:45 | Author: Malcolm Fuller
  • 25 die in KL tahfiz school fire

"I saw their little hands out of the grilled windows, crying for help", area resident Nurhayati Abdul Halim told local media as reported by The New York Times.

The victims were trapped behind barred windows and a blocked exit on the top floor of the three-story building on the outskirts of the Malaysian capital. The students and teachers were reportedly in the upper room, where the fire broke out.

He said 11 of the students would be buried at the Darul Sakinah Cemetery in Gombak, several others in Ampang and Keramat, while the rest might be brought by their families to be buried at their respective hometowns.

Shortly after the fire broke out, pictures started surfacing on the internet showing the charred building and ash-covered beds.

According to the City Fire and Rescue Services Department, 22 students and two wardens had died in the fire which gutted the school's entire third floor. "Just when you think they're going to stop unloading the van, more brought out", Sumisha Naidu, a correspondent for Channel News Asia, said in a Twitter post.

Another fire department official, Soiman Jahid, said firefighters heard shouts for help when they arrived at the school.

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The fire at the Tahfiz Darul Quran Ittifaqiyah softened out up the early hours of Thursday morning. "Usually, if the cause is a short circuit, the main fuse box would "kick" and it would take at least 30 minutes for the fire to spread".

Singh said, police were still finalizing the details and investigating the cause. "All of the bodies were found grouped together on each other", he added.

Officials said that the children were unable to escape after the fire broke out, as the blaze blocked the only door to the top-floor dormitory and the windows were closed off with metal security grilles.

However, an official with the state religious council said it had no record of the school. But, till then, numerous students have lost their lives in the fire accident.

He said the premises had been only temporary but those running the school should nevertheless have followed safety requirements.

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