Deadly Fire Claims Lives in Wellington Hostel, Several Still Missing


In a tragic incident, at least six people have lost their lives and several others remain unaccounted for after a fire engulfed Loafers Lodge hostel in Wellington, New Zealand. The Prime Minister, Chris Hipkins, revealed this distressing news to local media, urging the public to brace for the possibility of an increasing death toll.

Emergency services responded to the scene shortly after midnight local time, with over 50 individuals successfully rescued from the four-story building. However, as of now, 11 people are still missing, and authorities are unable to confirm the exact number of casualties until the building can be accessed.

The cause of the fire remains unknown, although Fire and Emergency New Zealand (FENZ) is treating it as suspicious. Contrary to initial assumptions, the police do not believe the fire was deliberately set, as reported by the New Zealand Herald. At the time of arrival, firefighters encountered the top floor of the hostel ablaze, prompting the deployment of at least 20 fire engines to combat the inferno.

During the rescue efforts, emergency services saved five individuals from the rooftop, while one person sustained serious injuries after leaping from the third floor in a desperate attempt to escape the flames.

Loafers Lodge Hostel, consisting of 92 rooms, caters to both short-term and long-term guests. Initially designated by New Zealand’s Ministry of Social Development as an emergency accommodation provider in 2011, it has served as a temporary home for over 3,300 households, including individuals who have been deported from Australia.

Reacting to the tragic event, Prime Minister Chris Hipkins expressed his condolences and paid tribute to the courageous firefighters who risked their lives to evacuate the building and extinguish the fire.

As investigations into the cause of the blaze continue, the nation mourns the loss of life and anxiously awaits news about the missing individuals.

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