Tragedy in France: at least nine dead after a fire in a summer house for people with disabilities

Fire in France leaves several victims. AFP

At least nine people died Wednesday after a fire that destroyed a hostel where a group of people with disabilities stayed who was on vacation in the east of FranceThe authorities reported this Wednesday.

“We located nine bodies and are still looking for two”declared to the AFP lieutenant colonel Philippe Hauwiller, in command of the rescue operation. Drones, dogs and rescuers located the bodies, he said.

The local fire service told the AFP that the authorities were alerted about the fire in the town of Wintzenheimin the region of Upper Rhinenear the border with Germanyaround 6:30 in the morning (0430 GMT).

“The fire was quickly brought under control despite the intensity of the flames,” the prefecture of the Haut-Rhin region said in a statement.

Seventeen people were evacuatedone of them hospitalized and another treated for shock.

The secretary general of the prefecture of the region, Christophe Marot, said there was “little doubt” that people had been in the center and were unable to get out. The official added that the group included adults with “slight intellectual disabilities.”

People on the ground floor were able to get out quickly, but not those on the floor above, the official explained.

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A summer house caught fire in France and several are missing. AFP

According to the firefighters, the accommodation was rented by an association that helps people with learning difficulties.

The traditional half-timbered building, built in the style of the region of alsaceturned out badly damaged by fireaccording to firefighters.

The firefighters sent an important device of 76 people, eleven vehicles and an emergency medical post, which was joined by forty gendarmes.

The roof was destroyed by flames and, on the first floor, the charred wooden framework was visible. other firefighters rubble was removed from the disaster site, as the smoke continued to rise. The French authorities have explained that the fire also affected the road RD417close to the building.

Macron’s message

“In the face of this tragedy, my thoughts are with the victims, the injured and their families. Thanks to our security forces and emergency services,” said the President of France, Emmanuel Macronon the social network X, formerly known as Twitter.

The Prime Minister, Elizabeth Bornesaid in X that would go to the scene after the “terrible” fire.

“My first thoughts are with the victims and their loved ones. I salute the mobilization of the firefighters”he added.

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Firefighters try to control the fire at a summer house in France. AFP

The Minister of the Interior, Gerald Darmaninpraised in X the “quick and courageous intervention by the fire brigade”.

The hostel is part of the ITE public networkP, whose centers welcome young people, adolescents and young adults with mental or intellectual development problems.

(With information from AFP and EFE)

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