A devastating fire broke out in two tower blocks in Spain

Fire safety raises questions that can have major financial consequences. The case has already drawn comparisons to the devastating fire in London in 2017.

A large high-rise complex was gutted by a fast-spreading fire in the Spanish city of Valencia on Thursday evening.

Two adjacent residential buildings of 14 and 10 floors burned to the ground within hours.

As of Friday morning, four people had died in the wreckage. Katy had 9-15 people. The extinguishment continued, and no entry was made into the smoking buildings.

According to eyewitnesses, the worst fire in Valencia started on the lower floors of the second tower. Within half an hour, the entire building was engulfed in flames due to strong winds.

Compared to the ferocity of the fire, the death toll is minimal. 15 people, including several firefighters, were taken to hospital.

Aluminum sheets and polyurethane

Many are now asking whether combustible materials were used in buildings completed at the end of the Spanish real estate boom of 2008-2009. Flames spread greedily across the façade.

According to an architect familiar with the buildings, the facade insulation consists of Swiss-made aluminum sheets with a polyurethane coating. There was an air gap between them – no fire walls to prevent fire from spreading.

The fire in Valencia is already being compared to the destruction of London's Grenfell Tower in 2017. In connection with the renovation, aluminum sheets were also installed on the facade. The fire that engulfed the 24-storey Grenfell Tower claimed 72 lives and led to extensive fire safety reviews in Britain, resulting in huge costs and loss of property values.

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The same would be true in Spain if building solutions such as the destroyed tower blocks in Valencia were more widely used. During the long real estate boom of 1998-2008, millions of apartments were built in the country.

Heavy costs.

The Valencia fire has drawn comparisons to the devastating fire in London in 2017, which claimed 72 lives and led to extensive fire safety reviews.

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