Fire kills at least 46 and wounds over 40 in Taiwan

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This picture taken and released by Taiwan’s Central News Agency (CNA) on October 14, 2021 shows rescue operations after an overnight fire tore through a building (pictured R) in the southern Taiwanese city of Kaohsiung, killing at least 46 people and injuring dozens of others. (Photo by STR / CNA / AFP) / Taiwan OUT - China OUT - Hong Kong OUT - Macau OUT / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE - MANDATORY CREDIT "AFP PHOTO / CNA Photo" - NO MARKETING - NO ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS - DISTRIBUTED AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS

A fire in a residential building in the southern Taiwanese city has killed at least 46 people and injured another 41.

The blaze in the 13-floor building broke out in the early hours of today and was extinguished around dawn.

Witnesses told local media that they heard an explosion at approximately 3am local time today.

The fire department of the city said in a statement that after completing a search of the 40-year-old building, they were able to confirm 46 deaths.

It also said the blaze was extremely fierce and destroyed many floors.

The head of the fire department told reporters at the scene that at least 11 bodies were sent straight to the morgue. Another 14 people who showed no signs of life were among 55 taken to the hospital.