Hyderabad: All the victims of the fire mishap at Ruby Hotel in Secunderabad died reportedly due to suffocation with almost all the bodies being found near the staircase and the corridor in the building.
Telangana State Disaster Response and Fire Services personnel, who inspected the building soon after gaining control over the fire, said the staircase leading to the upper floor of the building was around the lift.
“Soon after the fire began, the power got switched off. It was totally dark and the residents could not escape through the staircase. With thick smoke billowing, people suffocated and collapsed near the stairs and in the corridor,” Regional Fire Officer V Papaiah said.
The Fire department received a distress call around 9.37 pm and soon two fire tenders from the nearby station rushed to the spot.
“Five persons were rescued with the help of a snorkel fire tender. A few others were rescued with ladders,” he said.
Seven fire vehicles participated in the operation that spanned nearly three hours. The officials said the management had kept the electric scooters in the cellar of the building and due to a suspected short circuit or battery blast, the fire started. The batteries caught fire and it resulted in huge smoke.
Fire officials are assisting the local police in investigation of the case. The officials said they were verifying if the management had fire safety measures in place and the certification required for running a lodge. However, they said the management was at fault for keeping the electric scooters on the premises.