String of negligence led to death of three people in Istanbul hotel fire
Fırat Alkaç – ISTANBUL
AA photoA string of negligence led to the death of three people at a hotel in Istanbul’s Kumkapı district late on June 13, with the authorities finding fire emergency violations all over the building.
Three people were killed when a fire erupted at the 66-room Skalion Hotel late on June 13 and it was determined that the hotel’s fire exit doors were locked.
After the examinations, it was revealed that the doors of the halls that lead to fire exits were made of wood inside the hotel.
In addition to the fact that the door of the fire exit that leads to the hotel’s garden was locked, authorities determined that another door of the emergency exit that was unlocked only led to the lobby, which was where the fire erupted.
Speaking about the incident, Halit Kaan, a worker at an clothing atelier next to the hotel, said the doors were always locked.
“The fire escape of the hotel leads to the backyard of our shop and it has always been locked. In fact, I was sitting with my friends the other day and we said, ‘No one would survive if a fire erupted here,’” Kaan told daily Hürriyet.
One of the hotel’s owners, Mehmet Şahin refuted negligence claims, saying the locked door was not at the end of the fire escape.
“The part that’s locked is where transition to the next building can be made. It was locked as a precaution against thieves. The actual exit of the fire escape was the part leading to the lobby. There are fire extinguishers on every floor. We have systems against fire. Those killed didn’t lose their lives in the fire, they died because of the smoke,” Şahin said.
The partner and managing director of the hotel, Tuncay Doğan, was arrested over the fire on June 14.
“We are not at fault for this saddening incident,” Doğan reportedly told the court.