Firefighters battling traffic as well as a fire managed to pluck seven people from a burning building in Central Jakarta on Tuesday.
The victims, pulled from the fifth to 10th floors of the blazing Adira building on Jalan Menteng Raya with the aid of a ladder truck, were rushed to the hospital suffering from smoke inhalation. They reportedly escaped serious burn injuries.
A firefighter was also treated for smoke inhalation.
As many as 28 teams of firefighters were deployed to battle the massive blaze, which began around 5:30 p.m. and ripped through five floors of the 13-story building.
Emergency services were reportedly kept from reaching the scene by heavy traffic.
Nira, an employee of leading automotive financing company Adira, said she worked on the fifth floor and was still at the office when the alarm sounded.
“We thought nothing was wrong,” she said. “But then my boss ran out and screamed ‘fire.’”
S even people were trapped during the evacuation and could be seen waving frantically through the windows amid billowing smoke before their rescue. They were identified as Sofian, Alan Maulani, Budi, Kuncoro, Landung, Denny and Hamdani. All appeared to be employees of Adira.
Paimin Napitupulu, head of the Jakarta Fire and Disaster Office, said the fire likely started on the fifth floor soon after office hours ended at 5:30 p.m.
“It could have been caused by an electric short-circuit, but we will investigate more thoroughly tomorrow to make sure,” he said.
He said the building had previously passed a fire inspection.