plasco Fire and building collapse. The mixed residential,commercial (garment factories), and shopping centre caught fire this morning (January 19) at about 8 a.m. The17 story high-rise building was erected in 1962 by the founder of the Plasco plastics company Habib Elghanian. The building caught fire this morning (January 19) at about 8 a.m. and subsequently collapsed.

Plasco fire

The fire originated on the 9th floor according to en.Wikipedia and a large number of residents, as well as garment workers on factory floors and shoppers, were in the building at the time the fire originated.

Some reports are that as many as 33 firemen out of the ten responding fire companies were killed when the building collapsed which was quite rapid as seen on this YouTube video.

After several hours of fighting the fire the building collapsed in a few seconds.

Killed and injured

Although the original government reports originating with the city mayor Mohammad Baqer Qalibaf’s office but other reports on twitter and elsewhere on the Web indicate that some residents were seen sneaking back into the burning building to retrieve property or perhaps seek relatives so it is likely that some civilians were killed - that won’t be known completely for days.

Approximately 80 people are known to have been injured in the fire and subsequent collapse of the north side of the building with many transported to hospitals, several hundred according to many reports.

A twitter from @rezahakbari showed lines of people waiting to donate blood for victims of the fire and building collapse.

The Fars news agency told Aljazeera News that "a firefighter had sent a text message to a colleague, saying he was alive and trapped with several others at the building's engine room."

A fire inspector spokesperson told Aljazeera News that clothing was being stored in stairwells and that there were a number of other violations of fire safety rules in the old building.

No cause of the fire is yet being reported by any official source but since it was high up in the building it was most likely either an industrial accident or fault with the building itself.

(Reporter Note: Iran has been criticized a lot by various animal rights groups and by President-Elect Trump but everyone must feel a profound sadness and sympathy for the families of the brave firemen who died in this fire. Tragedies such as this have no room for thoughts about country, ethnic group, or religion.)