DUBAI: Eight members of an Emirati family were killed and one person was injured in a devastating house fire in the United Arab Emirates early on Tuesday.
The fire ripped through the family’s villa in Baniyas, an area of Abu Dhabi, killing six children and two women, the Dubai-based Al-Bayan newspaper reported.
Officials said they suffocated from the fire’s smoke.
Mohammad Al-Kotheiri, a relative of the victims, told local TV that the fire erupted on the ground floor of the two-storey house.
Authorities in Abu Dhabi, the UAE capital, did not immediately comment on the deaths but have opened an investigation to determine the cause of the fire.
However, Abu Dhabi officials urged the public to “stick to safety measures at home and ensure the maintenance of fire-prevention equipment.”
Condolences for the family poured in from people across the UAE.
The blaze comes after a similar fire killed seven children in the UAE emirate of Fujairah in January.
The tragedy prompted Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, Dubai’s ruler and the UAE’s prime minister and vice president, to say the country would install fire alarms in all citizens’ homes.