Around 25 firefighters are feared to be dead after Tehran’s oldest skyscraper caught fire and collapsed on Thursday, reported BBC. However, the number has not been confirmed by the Iranian government. Rescue workers and sniffer dogs are still looking for survivors. The number of people injured could be close to 100, reports said.

The firefighters got trapped in the rubble when they had gone to Plasco building to douse the flames. Smoke started billowing out of the ninth floor of the 17-storey shopping centre-cum-clothing workshop in the early hours of Thursday. Soon, the blaze engulfed the other floors.

More than 70 people have been injured. Other reports said the number of injured could be much higher. The British embassy, which is located next to Plasco, was evacuated on time.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has ordered a thorough investigation into the accident. The cause of the blaze is yet to be ascertained. However, it is believed that the building did not have adequate fire safety measures. “Repeated warnings had been given about the building and its fire control system was very weak,” said Eghbal Shkeri, a senior official of Tehran’s city council.

Politicians and ministers visited the spot. “It was shocking and unbelievable. The government is assisting with help from other forces including the military,” said Iran’s first vice president Eshagh Jahangiri, according to The Guardian.

The Plasco building came up in 1962. Built by Iranian Jewish businessman Habib Elghanian, the building was named after his company.