15 Dead, 70 Injured as Fire Razes Nairobi Market

A fire has gutted one of Nairobi’s largest open air markets, killing 15 and leaving about 70 injured, Kenyan officials have confirmed.

Nairobi County Commissioner Kangethe Thuku said six bodies have been recovered and nine are stuck in a building and must be retrieved. Hospital officials said there were four children among the dead.

Rescue teams are searching for more bodies and survivors in the Gikomba market, in the Pumwani low income neighborhood in Kenya’s capital city.

The St John Ambulance service said the fire broke out at 02:30 local time (23:30 GMT on Wednesday) and spread to apartments and market stalls before being contained after about 90 minutes.

Some of the victims were burned while others inhaled poisonous fumes as they tried to salvage their property.

Many Kenyans shop for second-hand clothes from the Gikomba market which also supplies other vendors with the used clothes from Europe and the United States.

Fires there are frequent, leading to speculation attacks.

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