A fire at World Trade Center in Hong Kong traps hundreds of people on roof, 1200 people evacuated

A major fire broke out in Hong Kong's 38-storey World Trade Center on Wednesday, trapping more than 300 people on the roof for three hours. The blaze started at lunchtime, around 12:30 pm, lasting for a good four hours. At least 1200 people were evacuated, and 13 people were sent to the hospital.

The fire seems to have started on the first floor "in an electrical switch room," according to South Morning China Post. It then spread to scaffolding and beyond.

Because of construction, the building was "like a maze," according to one worker, making getting out a bit confusing.

From SMCP:

Renovation worker James Ng was based on the third floor of the building which was blocked off to the public.

He said there were only two ways out of the building because of the ongoing renovations.

The number of lifts servicing the restaurant floors was also halved from four to two, he added.

"All the shops on the third floor are boarded up, some escalators only run in one direction while others are not functioning," he said. "It's like a maze inside. You will get lost if you're not familiar with the place."

"At around 12.45pm we started noticing smoke coming from the stairwell," the manager of the building's 12th floor Chinese restaurant said.

"We called the management hotline multiple times but there was no response.

"We quickly gathered the customers and grabbed some towels and evacuated. We had to bend low as the smoke was swelling up in the staircase."

The fire was finally put out at 4:30 pm.