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New fire in Bangladesh garment factory kills 8; death toll from building collapse hits 930

Posted: May 9, 2013 - 11:02pm

DHAKA, Bangladesh — A fire in an 11-story garment factory in Bangladesh killed eight people, including a ruling party politician and a top official in the country’s powerful clothing manufacturers’ trade group, as the death toll from the collapse of another garment factory building passed 900 on Thursday.

The fire Wednesday night engulfed the lower floors of the Tung Hai Sweater Ltd. factory — which had closed for the day — said Mamun Mahmud, deputy director of the fire service. The blaze, fed by huge piles of acrylic products used to make sweaters, produced immense amounts of smoke, he said.

The victims died of suffocation as they ran down the stairs, Mahmud said.

“Apparently they tried to flee the building through the stairwell in fear that the fire had engulfed the whole building,” he said.

Had they stayed on the upper floors they would likely have survived the slow spreading fire, he said.

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