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Giant aquarium explodes in Berlin’s luxury hotel

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BERLIN, GERMANY: Debris lie around in front of the Radisson Blu hotel, where a huge aquarium located in the hotel's lobby burst on December 16, 2022 in Berlin, Germany. (Cüneyt Karadağ - Anadolu Agency)
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Dec 16, 2022 - 01:19 PM

BERLIN (AA) – The world’s largest freestanding aquarium in Berlin’s Radisson hotel burst on Friday morning, causing extensive damage and spilling thousands of gallons of water onto nearby streets.

Berlin Mayor Franziska Giffey said two people suffered minor injuries, while around 400 hotel guests have been safely evacuated.

“We were lucky. If that had not happened at 5.45 a.m (0445 GMT), but maybe an hour later, then many people could have died or got injured,” she said.

The AquaDom, which was home to 1,500 tropical fish, was located in a complex which houses the luxury hotel.

Restaurants and shops at the hotel complex were heavily damaged, and hundreds of fish were dead, according to the witnesses.

Hotel guests told local media they were woken up by a loud noise at around 5.45 a.m. and came out to see huge damage in the lobby.

It remains unclear what caused the massive tank to explode and flood the building’s basement.

Earlier, Berlin police spokesman Martin Stralau said initial investigations indicated that the incident was possibly an accident.

The huge aquarium, which had a height of about 16 meters, was filled with 1 million liters of water, and it was refurbished and modernized in 2020.

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