DUBAI // A huge blaze broke out at The Address Downtown Dubai on Thursday night, several hours before the emirate’s New Year’s eve fireworks were to take place.
Videos and pictures of the fire, just behind The Burj Khalifa, began flooding social media sites as soon as word spread.
Mohammed Al Sarraf, a Kuwaiti businessman who came to Dubai to celebrate the new year with his wife, said the fire spread quickly.
“It’s raging,” Mr Al Sarraf said. “It’s gotten so much bigger in five minutes. It’s gone from just a small fire at the foot of the building and now it’s shooting up the middle and the top.
“It’s getting out of hand.”
Civil Defence were on the scene shortly after the fire began.
The Dubai Waterfront was evacuated, with many visitors being moved into The Dubai Mall while the fire was tackled.
Mr Al Sarraf said he noticed the fire from where he was seated after he smelled smoke.
“I can smell it and I’m on the other side of Sheikh Zayed Road,” he said. “People are gathering and they are watching it and they are in dead shock.”
Ahmad Al Bader, a restaurateur who was at The Burj Khalifa with friends, watched as the fire took over the entire building.