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Tent Fire Kills 43 in Kuwait City

One Exit, Hampered Escape of Occupants

Pictures show how devastating this fire was, with nothing but a burned out area littered with shoes and support poles.  On Saturday night, August 16, 2009 a wedding was taking place in the tribal town of Al-Jahra outside of Kuwait City, which quickly turned deadly.  The fire has claimed the lives of 43 people and nearly 90 have been injured.  The cause of this fire is under investigation, although news reports are indicating the ex-wife of the groom may have intentionally started the fire.

The size of the tent could have had up to 200 people in the tent, although it appears that 112 women and children were in the tent at the time of the fire.  When the fire was noticed, there was panic and a rush towards the single exit in the cloth tent.  The tent was filled with women and children who were part of a local wedding (most weddings in the area are segregated).

Officials are reporting that the tent was discouraged in the residential area and was not properly permitted per the local authorities.

Early causes of the fire were deemed to be related to electrical or cooking related.  Based on reports early Monday morning the fire appears to be intentionally set and details will be provided once available.

Resources on tents and canopies

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