Official spokesman for the General Directorate of Civil Defense in Makkah Maj. Nayef Al-Sharif said that “flames were coming from a faulty air conditioning unit on the eighth floor of the 15-story hotel, which was inhabited by 600 pilgrims from Turkey and Yemen.”
He added that “all the hotel guests were evacuated as a precautionary measure by rescue teams while the fire was put out and the situation brought under control without causing any injuries or loss of life.”
Al- Sharif said that a team was investigating the cause of the incident in coordination with the concerned authorities and added that guests had been allowed back in the hotel.
Pilgrims are expected to flock to Makkah from all over the world to perform the fifth pillar of Islam, the Hajj pilgrimage.
In a similar incident, a fire took hold of six buildings, three of which collapsed completely, in Jeddah’s historic center Tuesday, forcing 60 people to evacuate.