According to Taiwan’s official Central News Agency (CNA), the fire started at 2:54 p.m. local time (2:54 p.m. ET) in a 13-story commercial and residential building.
A spokesman for the Kaohsiung City Fire Bureau told CNN that rescue operations are still ongoing, with more than 377 rescuers deployed to the scene. He said at least 41 people were injured.
Initially, officials put the death toll at seven, but city fire chief Lee Ching-hsiu warned that more casualties were expected as some people were still trapped in the residential part of the building between the seventh and eleventh floors. can.
A total of 139 fire trucks and ambulances were deployed to the scene and the fire was brought under control at 7:17 a.m. (7:17 a.m. ET), the CNA said. By noon, at least 62 people, aged 8 to 83, had been rescued.
According to the CNA, more than 100 residents, many of whom are physically challenged senior citizens, live in the building.
According to CNA, it is not clear what caused the fire. According to the report, local police are reviewing surveillance footage and have said they cannot rule out human factors.
This is a developing story.