16 May 2023

'Once in a decade fire' - WGTN Fire and Emergency

From Morning Report, 6:43 am on 16 May 2023

Multiple people are believed to be dead after a fire overnight in a 92-room hostel in the Wellington suburb of Newtown.

The fire at the Loafers Lodge hostel just after midnight.

Five people have been taken to hospital 2 in a serious condition.

At least five people were rescued off the roof.

Nick Pyatt Fire and Emergency district manager for Wellington said minutes ago at a media standup that this is a worst nightmare situation and is a once in a decade fire for Wellington.

52 people were taken out of the building. Emergency services received a phone call at 12:25pm alerting to them to the fire - it is continuing to burn.

A further 15 people were treated by ambulance staff at the scene but did not require - or did not want - hospital treatment.

Emergency services were closed Adelaide Road to all traffic at the John Street and Drummond Street intersections.

Power was cut to nearby properties.

RNZ reporter Jemima Huston was at the scene and spoke with Corin Dann.