Ho Chi Minh City ITC Fire
State media said 120 people were injured in the fire which began at 1:15 p.m. local time (0615 GMT) on Tuesday.
Initial reports indicated it may have been sparked by a short-circuit in the Blue Disco, one of the city's most popular dance spots, on the building's second floor.
Intense heat and lingering flames prevented firefighters from entering the building for about four hours with firefighters taking more than five hours to extinguish the inferno. Bodies were still being recovered from the site late Tuesday though it is unclear whether any foreigners were among the dead or injured.
It was reported that U.S. insurer American International Assurance was holding a training course for more than 100 staff at the time of the fire. There were also reports there was a wedding party in the building. On Wednesday, the building—which contains several floors of shops, around 50 offices and the disco and has a usual occupancy of about 1500 people—was barricaded with police keeping onlookers at bay.
At least five fire fighting vehicles were at the site on Wednesday though none were in use, a far cry from the scene on Tuesday when 30 fire engines and 40 ambulances surrounded the building. The Vietnam People's Army reported that firefighters were not fully equipped to fight the fire and lacked water to put out the flames. Power in the area was cut off and streets cordoned off. Flames raged at other windows sending dense black smoke into the sky as workers fled for their lives, many down steel ladders reaching up from fire trucks below. Others jumped out of the windows.
Two welders have been arrested in Vietnam following a fire at an office complex in Ho Chi Minh city which killed more than 60 people.
The men were working at a discotheque on the second floor of the building, and it is suspected that sparks from their equipment may have started the blaze.
The fire at the six-storey Saigon International Business Centre on Tuesday left more than 100 injured.
Earlier, officials had pointed to a gas leak and faulty wiring as possible explanations for the blaze.
Rescue workers have continued to hunt through the burned-out building for bodies.
Four foreigners are among the dead.
Apart from smouldering fire in some points, the flames in Saigon Intershop building in Vietnam's Ho Chi Minh City were put out by 7:00 p.m.(local time) Tuesday, according to a source from the city.
There have not yet been exact figures of dealths and injuries. But at least 54 persons were killed and more than 100 others injured so far.
The fire burst out ensuing a blast in the Saigon Intershop building at 1:30 p.m. (local time), and fiercely flared up since 2:00 p.m.. By late afternoon, hundreds of people escaping the burning building have been rushed into hopitals and health centers for emergency treatment.