A high-rise building in Tehran engulfed by a fire collapsed on Thursday as scores of firefighters battled the blaze. It wasn't immediately clear if anyone was trapped inside at the time of the collapse.
Authorities told the state-run IRNA news agency just after the collapse that at least 38 people had been injured at the Plasco building, an iconic structure in central Tehran just north of the capital's sprawling bazaar. They did not break down how people had been injured by the fire or the collapse.
Firefighters battled the blaze for several hours before the collapse as police kept out shopkeepers and others wanting to rush back in to collect their valuables.
The building came down in a matter of seconds, shown live on state television, which had begun an interview with a journalist at the scene. A side of the building came down first, tumbling perilously close to a firefighter perched on a ladder and spraying water on the blaze.
A thick plume of brown smoke rose over the site. Onlookers wailed in grief.
Jalal Maleki, a fire department spokesman, earlier told Iranian state television that 10 firehouses responded to the blaze, which was first reported around 8 a.m.
The Plasco building was an iconic presence on the Tehran skyline.
The 17-story tower was built in the early 1960s by Iranian Jewish businessman Habib Elghanian and named after his plastics manufacturing company. It was the tallest building in the city at the time of its construction.Read More...
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