Beijing China. Fireworks start five-plus-hour blaze, destroy new high-rise:
From the Guardian:
A new 44-storey luxury hotel in downtown Beijing was today engulfed in a fire thought to have been caused by sparks from fireworks as the city celebrated China’s biggest holiday.
One onlooker, Li Jian, said he saw smoke rise from the hotel roof shortly after a huge burst of fireworks showered it with sparks. “Smoke came out for a little while, but then it just started burning,” Li said.
Crews put out much of the fire within three hours although smaller fires were still burning.
About 600 firemen, along with 85 fire engines, fought the blaze that started at 8:27 p.m. Monday and was put out at about 2 a.m. Tuesday. More than 600 people living in three residential buildings near the fire were relocated to 10 nearby hotels Monday night.
The fire-damaged TVCC building as seen on Tuesday (Photo by AP)
The deadly fire that broke out in Beijing’s business district has apparently left the landmark $800 million square China Central Television Tower without serious damage. But the iconic structure and its fans have suffered a loss nevertheless.
The inferno– which CCTV has admitted was caused by a fireworks display arranged by one its own employees-– turned the 44-story Television Cultural Center into a blackened hulk. The boot-shaped building was an integral part of well-known Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas’s award-winning vision for the CCTV complex in the heart of Beijing’s Central Business District.
If the laws of physics are the same here, as they are there… then why hasn’t this building crumpled into a hole, floor by floor, leaving very little standing or identifiable, exploding outward into dust as it imploded, into its own basement, within 45 minutes of the beginning of the fire?