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Businessman describes 'lucky escape' from Dubai hotel fire

The fire took hold in one of Dubai's tallest buildings Credit: Namiko Endo

A businessman says he had a 'lucky escape' from the fire which engulfed part of a luxury hotel in Dubai on New Year's Eve.

Richard Upshall had been sitting on a terrace with a friend at the Address Downtown Hotel when they noticed flames above them.

Mr Upshall told ITV Tyne Tees that the fire caught the hotel 'by surprise' and said guests organised themselves in order to escape.

Mr Upshall is based in the UAE but has five companies in Stockton. Among them, a talent management business which represents the Billingham singer Josh Daniel, who took part in this year's X Factor.

Mr Upshall went back to the scene of the fire today and posted the following tweets:

In a statement, the Dubai government said it responded 'rapidly' to the fire, coordinating efforts to 'instantly evacuate' hotel guests..

The Abu Dhabi-based newspaper The National reported the chairman of Emaar Properties, which owns the hotel, as saying:

Our immediate priority was ensuring the safety of our guests and colleagues, and we evacuated all of them safely in record time in a most orderly fashion.

– Mohamed Alabbar, Emaar Properties

Investigation launched into Dubai hotel blaze

Authorities have launched an investigation into the cause of a huge fire in a high-rise luxury hotel in Dubai on New Year's Eve.

Only minor injuries were reported in the aftermath of the fire at the Address Downtown hotel, which burned long into New Year's Day before firefighters finally brought it under control 12 hours after it began.

Video released by the Dubai government shows firefighters entering the smoke-filled 63-storey building.

Authorities have launched an investigation into the cause of a huge fire in a high-rise luxury hotel in Dubai on New Year's Eve.

Dubai-based Emaar Properties, which built the Burj Khalifa, the Address Downtown and other surrounding developments, declined to immediately answer questions about the fire. It did issue a statement praising authorities "for their immediate and professional support".

"An investigation is ongoing and details will be provided once they are ascertained," the statement said.

Dubai hotel fire: New photos show extent of damage

Photographs released by the Dubai government show the extent to which the Address Downtown hotel was damaged by fire overnight.

Despite dramatic footage showing flames leaping from the upper floors after the fire broke out late in the evening on 31 December, there were only a few minor injuries as guests and residents escaped the building.

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