At least 15 people were killed and 70 injured in a fire that broke out at a market in the Kenyan capital city of Nairobi in the early hours of Thursday, local media reports quoted an emergency service provider as saying. The fire reportedly started 2.30 am (5 am India time), and was contained by 4 am.
The fire broke out in the Kwa Mbao area before spreading to other parts of the Gikomba market, said the Kenyan Red Cross. It consumed timber yards and bales of used clothes, Daily Nation reported. The inferno spread fast to residential houses and caused “extensive damage to property”, the Red Cross said.
At least 15 residential apartments and several shanties were damaged, according to St John Ambulance. “At least 40 casualties evacuated by St John Ambulance following huge fire that gutted part of residential and market sections of Gikomba,” the emergency service provider tweeted.
The Gikomba is one of the largest open-air markets in the city and fires there are frequent, leading to speculation about possible arson attacks, The Standard reported.