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14 die in nightclub fire in Thailand: No foreign tourist among dead
Social media videos showed revellers screaming and running out with their bodies engulfed in flames. “The singer shouted ‘fire’ and threw away the microphone" and scrambled for the exit. Even security guards had their clothes on fire. Thai television TPBS reported that the back door was locked. The club had flammable soundproofing making the job all the more difficult for firefighters.

BANGKOK, Aug 5: Fourteen people died in a nightclub fire in Thailand on Friday. The fire occurred at the Mountain B nightclub in the Sattahip district of Chonburi province, about 160 km southeast of Bangkok in the wee hours.

Of 40 other people injured, 14 have severe burns. The police said all the victims have been identified and they are all Thai nationals.

Social media videos showed people running out with their bodies engulfed in flames. Thick black smoke billowed out of the building's doors at the front, on the side and at the back. Witnesses heard sound of explosions. “The fire started at the top right corner of the stage,” one witness told reporters. “The singer shouted ‘fire’ and threw away the microphone." Even security guards had their clothes on fire.

Thai television TPBS reported that the back door was locked. The club had flammable soundproofing acoustic foam on the walls making the job all the more difficult for the firefighters.

Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha assured the families of the victims of relief from the Government.

The cause of the deadly fire is under investigation.

Entertainment venues in Thailand do not have proper emergency exits and fire safety measures, it is said.

In an earlier incident 13 years ago, a blaze at a New Year’s party at a nightclub in Bangkok killed 66 people and injured more than 200. In 2012, in tourist favourite Phuket, four people died in a club fire.

Incidentally, after the covid pandemic, all those vaccinated had a free entry since May 1 and foreign tourist footfalls increased although there was no report of any foreigner trapped in Friday's fire incident. The Government expects 15 million overseas visitors by year-end. Thailand is a sought-after destination for tourists around the world, especially from the Western countries.

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