SHARE
COPY LINK

FIRE

Courchevel blaze: ‘There were people in tears… it was chaos’

Two people died Sunday and 25 more were injured, four seriously, in a fire at the ski resort of Courchevel in the French Alps, officials said.

Courchevel blaze: 'There were people in tears... it was chaos'
Photo: AFP
The pre-dawn blaze forced the evacuation of some 60 resort workers, including foreigners, from a three-storey accommodation building.
   
Firefighters found the two unidentified bodies in a burnt-out area of the building in the upmarket Courchevel 1850 ski station.
   
Three of the four badly injured were flown to hospital by helicopter, the local officials said.
 
SEE ALSO: 
 
The cause of the fire was not immediately known.
 
“Some young people escaped down the facade of the building using the balustrades. Some of them were in their underwear,” said one witness, who identified himself as Victor, 27.
 
Titi, a private minicab driver who was at the scene “within minutes” told Le Parisien: “I saw people stuck on the top floor. Some managed to come down through the railings, but others had to jump to escape the flames.”
 
“There were people in tears, lost, some could not bring warm clothes. It was chaos.”
 
Eric Boix-Vives, the owner of a supermarket “arrived there at 5:30 am”.
 
“There were flames everywhere, people who were being evacuated under covers,” he said.  
   
The blaze had already devoured the top two floors of the building by the time firefighters arrived, fire service spokesman Emmanuel Clavaud said.
   
Around 70 firemen working at the scene brought it under control by daybreak.
   
Interior Minister Christophe Castaner tweeted condolences to the families and friends of the dead and paid tribute to the firemen who tackled the blaze.
   
Courchevel is one of the most chic resorts in the French Alps, with numerous Michelin-starred restaurants and luxury chalets.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.

FIRE

Barcelona fire kills four, including two children

A fire ripped through an abandoned bank occupied by squatters in central Barcelona on Tuesday, killing four people, including a baby and a three year-old boy, Spanish firefighters said.

Police and firefighters gather outside an abandoned building where a blaze broke out early on November 30, 2021 in Barcelona, killing four people.
Police and firefighters gather outside an abandoned building where a blaze broke out early on November 30, 2021 in Barcelona, killing four people. (Photo by Pau BARRENA / AFP)

“While we were battling the fire, we found four people. Emergency services tried to revive them but unfortunately they failed, they could not do anything to save them,” the head of the firefighting operation, Ángel López, told reporters.

Firefighters rescued four other people who were inside the building while putting out the blaze, he added.

Those four were treated for smoke inhalation.

Firefighters rushed to the scene at around 6 am after being warned that a blaze had broken out in the building, Mr Lopez said.

While Mr López said it was not clear how the four dead people were related, Barcelona-based daily newspaper La Vanguardia said they were all members of a Romanian family.

A spokesman for Catalonia’s regional police force, the Mossos d’Esquadra, said an investigation had been opened into the causes of the fire.

In December 2020, four people were killed after a blaze ripped through an industrial complex occupied by squatters, many of them African migrants, near Barcelona.

Over 100 squatters were believed to be living in precarious conditions at the abandoned complex in Badalona, a suburban town north of the city.

In addition to the four deaths, more than 20 people were injured in the blaze.

SHOW COMMENTS