A fire hit a bar located in a northern city in France, Rouen, on early Saturday morning. Attendees were celebrating a birthday party before the fire started.
The city of Rouen has been struck with a tragedy after 13 people died and six more injured in a deadly and accidental fire in a bar. According to authorities, the bar was closed due to a private birthday party. Officials have reported the birthday party was being celebrated in the basement of “Au Cuba Libre” and attendees were between 12 and 25 years old. The fire started quickly and lasted a few minutes, according to Yvon Robert, Mayor of Rouen city who assured the moment of joy ended tragically for those involved.
An accident that ended tragically
Even though investigations remain ongoing, Laurent Labadie a Vice prosecutor talked to the Associated Press and confirmed that the preliminary testimony claimed the fire was accidental.
According to Labadie, the birthday candles were the cause of the accident when the person who was holding the cake fell down the stairs to the basement. The Cuba Libre bar has isolating material on the walls, which quickly became susceptible to the candles and started the fire.
Authorities are still investigating the amount of people inside the bar but according to officials, the number might have been higher than the capacity allowed.
Neighbors and witnesses were alarmed concerning the fire when the ground windows started to explode because of the heat. Initial reports on French media, show a burned bar, broken windows and burned red chairs.
According to the bar owner, Bruno, the fire was quick and attendees were trapped inside. Authorities have categorized the accident as the deadliest fire in the country since 2005, leaving 13 deaths and severe cases in local hospitals.
“Young people, some of them very young had their lives cut short,” said Clotilde Valter the French Junior Minister in a statement, assuring the circumstances were painful for the entire country.
The city of Rouen had been recently shocked after a local priest was brutally murdered by two ISIS extremists inside his own church on July 26th. The priest’s funeral was recently held at the Rouen Cathedral.
The priest’s death was one of the several attacks at the hands of terrorists in France. The country is currently struggling with a crisis over extremists belonging to the Islamic State just as the rest of Europe. Germany has also faced an on-going number of attacks and incidents in the past few weeks.
Source: CBS News