VIDEO: 30 Berliner fish survive aquarium explosion at Radisson Blu hotel, Germany KossyDerrickBlog KossyDerrickEnt

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Saturday, December 17, 2022

VIDEO: 30 Berliner fish survive aquarium explosion at Radisson Blu hotel, Germany

Around 100 emergency responders rushed to the site, a leisure complex that houses a Radisson hotel and a museum as well as what Sea Life Berlin said was the world's largest freestanding cylindrical aquarium at 14 metres in height.

"It felt like an earthquake" said Naz Masraff, who was staying at the hotel when the aquarium burst on Friday. 

Another hotel guest, Sandra Weeser, spoke of chaos.

"The whole aquarium burst and what's left is total devastation. Lots of dead fish, debris," she said.Around 100 emergency responders rushed to the site, a leisure complex that houses a Radisson hotel and a museum as well as what Sea Life Berlin said was the world's largest freestanding cylindrical aquarium at 14 metres in height.

"It felt like an earthquake" said Naz Masraff, who was staying at the hotel when the aquarium burst on Friday. 

Another hotel guest, Sandra Weeser, spoke of chaos.

"The whole aquarium burst and what's left is total devastation. Lots of dead fish, debris," she said.

Police said they were alerted to a loud noise in Berlin's Mitte district at around 5:45 a.m. local time (11:45 p.m. Eastern on Thursday). The fire department was alerted by an automatic alarm in the DomAquarée complex, which houses various businesses including a Radisson Blu hotel, at the same time.

berlin-aqua-dom-aquarium.jpg 
The "Aqua-Dom" saltwater aquarium is seen in the lobby of a business and leisure complex in Berlin, Germany, in a file image taken from video shot in 2003. 
REUTERS
The huge volume of water in the "Aqua-Dom," the enormous, cylindrical tank situated directly over a bar in the lobby, put sufficient force behind the tank's failure to send debris flying "abruptly" in all directions, police said.


"It was a full-on tsunami," Berlin Mayor Franziska Giffey said, calling it mere luck that the aquarium came apart in the early hours of the day, when there weren't many people around. "Despite the terrible destruction we're seeing, we're lucky people weren't seriously injured."  

She added that the aquarium's saltwater inhabitants, however, "could not be saved." 

The police said there was no indication of sabotage or any attack on the aquarium, and the cause of the failure remained unclear.

Germany Aquarium Bursts 
A firefighter walks through debris in front of a hotel where a huge aquarium has burst in Berlin, Germany, December 16, 2022.
MARKUS SCHREIBER/AP
The fire department deployed about 100 personnel to the scene, along with about as many police officers, to establish a cordon and keep people away as water swamped the area. Much of the water flowed into street drains quickly, however.

All guests from the Radission Blu hotel, which sits in the floors above the DomAquarée lobby, were eventually evacuated.


Update- being evacuated from #radissonblu and #aquadome now. Here’s my view as we left pic.twitter.com/vCjXjZde40

— Larissa (@lararimmer) December 16, 2022
Officials were assessing the stability and safety of the building, which sustained significant damage on the ground floor.

The large aquarium has long been a tourist attraction in Berlin, billed by the operators as the "largest cylindrical free-standing aquarium in the world."

The tank itself was 52 feet high and almost 38 feet in diameter, made of acrylic glass. Visitors could ride an elevator right up through the middle of the aquarium.

An image taken from video shot in 2003 shows people riding a two-level elevator through the middle of the Aqua-Dom aquarium, in the lobby of the DomAquarée business and leisure complex in Berlin, Germany.
REUTERS
Around 1,500 saltwater fish of more than 100 different species lived in the tank. The aquarium was reportedly extensively modernized in the summer of 2020. 

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In: Germany. 

Two people were injured by splinters of glass, and emergency services asked around 350 hotel guests to pack their belongings and leave amid concerns that there could be structural damage.

Mayor Franziska Giffey said the incident had unleashed a "veritable tsunami" of water but the early morning timing had prevented far more injuries.

"Despite all the destruction, we were still very lucky," she said.

"We would have had terrible human damage had the aquarium burst even an hour later, once more people were awake and in the hotel and the surrounding area," she said.

The AquaDom was described as the biggest cylindrical tank in the world and held more than a thousand tropical fish before the incident.

Among the 80 types of fish were blue tang and clownfish, two colourful species known from the popular animated movie Finding Nemo.

"Unfortunately, none of the 1,500 fish could be saved," Mayor Giffey said.

Search and rescue dogs scoured the ground floor of the building, which was too littered with debris for responders to access, but found no casualties, the Berlin fire brigade said on Twitter.

A spokesperson for the fire brigade told Reuters it was still unclear what had caused the AquaDom aquarium to burst.

There was speculation that freezing temperatures which got down to minus 10 degrees Celsius overnight caused a crack in the acrylic glass tank, causing it to explode under the weight of the water.

Police said there was no evidence the incident resulted from a malicious act.

At around 5:45 a.m. local time (0445 GMT) there was a very loud noise and parts of the facade of the hotel where the aquarium was located flew onto the street, a police spokesman was reported as saying in local media outlet RBB.

Berlin's traffic agency VIZ said an extremely large volume of water had spilled over onto the street outside while Berlin police said "massive amounts of water" have flowed onto the street.

Littered with debris, the area has been largely cordoned off while the street on which the hotel is located — Karl-Liebknecht Strasse — has been closed off.

The fire department deployed about 100 personnel to the scene, along with about as many police officers, to establish a cordon and keep people away as water swamped the area. Much of the water flowed into street drains quickly, however.

All guests from the Radission Blu hotel, which sits in the floors above the DomAquarée lobby, were eventually evacuated.The company, which had offered glass elevator rides through the AquaDom aquarium, said it would also remain closed until further notice.

Police said on Twitter there had been "unbelievable maritime damage".

Efforts were underway on Friday afternoon to save an additional 400 to 500 smaller fish housed in aquariums underneath the hotel lobby. Without electricity, their tanks were not receiving the necessary oxygen for them to survive, officials said.

"Now it's about evacuating them quickly," Almut Neumann, a city official in charge of environmental issues for Berlin's Mitte district, told German news agency dpa. 

Emergency services shut a major road next to the complex that leads from Alexanderplatz toward the Brandenburg Gate due to the large volume of water that had flooded out of the building.

The aquarium was last refurbished in 2020, according to the website of the DomAquaree complex.

During the upgrading work, all the water was drained from the tank and the fish were moved to aquariums in the basement of the building, where there is a breeding care facility for the fish, it said.

DomAquaree as well as the AquaDom aquarium are owned by a real estate fund managed by Union Investment.Emergency services shut a major road next to the complex that leads from Alexanderplatz toward the Brandenburg Gate due to the large volume of water that had flooded out of the building.

The aquarium was last refurbished in 2020, according to the website of the DomAquaree complex.

During the upgrading work, all the water was drained from the tank and the fish were moved to aquariums in the basement of the building, where there is a breeding care facility for the fish, it said.

DomAquaree as well as the AquaDom aquarium are owned by a real estate fund managed by Union Investment.

She added that the aquarium's saltwater inhabitants, however, "could not be saved." 

The police said there was no indication of sabotage or any attack on the aquarium, and the cause of the failure remained unclear.

The fire department deployed about 100 personnel to the scene, along with about as many police officers, to establish a cordon and keep people away as water swamped the area. Much of the water flowed into street drains quickly, however.

All guests from the Radission Blu hotel, which sits in the floors above the DomAquarée lobby, were eventually evacuated.

Officials were assessing the stability and safety of the building, which sustained significant damage on the ground floor.

The large aquarium has long been a tourist attraction in Berlin, billed by the operators as the "largest cylindrical free-standing aquarium in the world."

The tank itself was 52 feet high and almost 38 feet in diameter, made of acrylic glass. Visitors could ride an elevator right up through the middle of the aquarium.

Officials were assessing the stability and safety of the building, which sustained significant damage on the ground floor.

The large aquarium has long been a tourist attraction in Berlin, billed by the operators as the "largest cylindrical free-standing aquarium in the world."

The tank itself was 52 feet high and almost 38 feet in diameter, made of acrylic glass. Visitors could ride an elevator right up through the middle of the aquarium.

The DomAquaree building lies just 350 meters from Berlin Cathedral and houses the Sea Life aquarium along with the so-called AquaDom, a giant tank that was home to some 1,500 tropical fish species.

The aquarium was filled with one million liters of salt water, equating to 1,000 cubic meters of water weighing 1,000 metric tons.

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