Elderly Japan

Kobe apartment house fire kills four elderly men

A fire that broke out at an apartment house in Kobe City, western Japan early Sunday claimed the lives of four men between the ages of 77 and 86. A resident said many of those occupying the five square-meter rooms were elderly people who lived alone. Many of those living on the first floor were people with disabilities, including some using wheelchairs.

From NHK World

January 22 2023

KOBE – A fire that broke out at an apartment house in Kobe City, western Japan early Sunday claimed the lives of four men between the ages of 77 and 86.

A resident noticed flames emerging from the first floor of the three-story building around 1:30 a.m. and called the fire department.

Firefighters extinguished the blaze in about an hour, after it engulfed part of the 100-square-meter floor space on the first floor as well as part of the second floor.

Police and fire officials said about 30 people are believed to have been in the building, which has 31 rooms.

The bodies of the four men were found on the first floor where the fire is believed to have started.

Four other residents, whose ages ranged from their forties to their seventies, were transported to a hospital unconscious and in serious conditions. One victim in his forties, who suffered burns on his throat, later regained consciousness.

A resident said many of those occupying the five square-meter rooms were elderly people who lived alone. Many of those living on the first floor were people with disabilities, including some using wheelchairs.

Police are investigating the cause of the fire.

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