Nov 21, 2010

China's building boom punctuated by deadly fire

Deadly Shanghai fire caused by hasty China building boom?

In the photo above Chinese firefighters extinguish a huge fire which engulfed a 28 story building in Shanghai. The November, 2010 blaze killed at least 53 people.

Authorities say that a spark from an unlicensed welder's torch ignited the blaze in the 28-story building.

The building, which was constructed in 1997 to house retired teachers, was wrapped in scaffolding as part of a project to install insulation.

The procedure is common in China, where the government has ordered broad measures to improve energy efficiency.

Insulation is frequently added to the outside of buildings and then covered with layers of paint.

This fire has raised concerns about the safety risks of China's ongoing building boom.