A huge fire that broke out on the upper floors of a hotel and apartment block in Dublin poses ‘serious questions’, a local politician has said.
Some 60 firefighters and eight crews battled to stop the major blaze at the Metro Hotel Building in Ballymun near Dublin Airport on Wednesday night.
Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB) said crews were remaining at the scene into Thursday morning to ensure the fire was completely extinguished.
The scene this morning at #BallymunFire. It is amazing how this 15 storey 88 bed hotel and 30 apartment block building was not totally engulfed last night. A testament to the profesionalism of @DubFireBrigade @gardainfo and @DubCityCouncil pic.twitter.com/RKuvpOhKAw
— Cllr Paul McAuliffe (@PaulMcauliffe) March 22, 2018
— Cllr Paul McAuliffe (@PaulMcauliffe) March 21, 2018
Images showed that parts of the complex, the upper floors of which are residential apartments, were charred and blackened.
Thankfully, there were no reports of injuries or missing people from the building, which is sometimes used to accommodate families in housing need.
Local Fianna Fail councillor Paul McAuliffe said the blaze was ‘one of the most significant fires in the Dublin area in recent times’.
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She added: ‘Its cause and the spread of it in such a rapid way are going to have to be investigated.
‘Dublin Fire Brigade have that capacity to investigate these fires. We want to see the results of it and I imagine there will be serious questions asked.’
Witness Anthony Flynn, a co-founder of the Inner City Helping Homeless organisation, said the fire seemed to spread ‘like mad’ in scenes reminiscent of the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
He said he understood no homeless families were currently housed in the building.
He added: ‘We are looking at the top seven floors that appear to be alight. It seems to be spreading like mad.
‘It’s exactly what it looked like at Grenfell. It appears to have started on the top two floors but has spread downwards and upwards.’
— Dublin Fire Brigade (@DubFireBrigade) March 22, 2018
Dublin city councillor Paul McAuliffe described seeing windows ‘exploding’ and ‘fire and debris billowing out the side of the building’.
He said: ‘This is going to leave a major scar on the landscape of Ballymun.’
Ireland’s Housing minister Eoghan Murphy tweeted that he was ‘monitoring the situation closely’.