By Libya Herald staff.
Tripoli, 31 December 2014:
Tripoli’s Rasheed Street street was cordoned off yesterday as workmen and rubbish collectors started clearing . . .[restrict]the detritus of a serious fire sparked by a shooting incident inside a fireworks shop.
Fireworks were ignited after an altercation led to shots being fired inside the shop on Monday evening, according to the Tripoli-based Libyan news agency LANA. The fire rapidly flared, as more and more fireworks ignited and exploded, and soon spread to nearby shops, stalls and residential apartments on the upper floors.
Several people were seriously injured in the fire but no deaths were reported. The fire was brought under control by local fire-fighting units, but a large part of one block was severely fire-damaged.
Rasheed Street, located just off Omar Mukhtar Street and close to Tripoli Old Town is one of the capital’s busiest street markets.
Fireworks are extremely popular in Libya but are often used with a reckless disregard for safety. Today the Tripoli-based government launched an awareness-raising campaign about the dangers of fireworks in the run-up to the Prophet’s Birthday. During last year’s celebrations, more than 234 people in Tripoli alone were admitted to hospital with fireworks-related injuries.
The Ministry of Social Affairs has set up a tent in Martyrs’ Square encouraging people to celebrate without the use of fireworks. The Scouts and the Libyan Red Crescent are participating in the campaign, handing out leaflets showing images of children injured by fireworks during 2014.