September 29, 2019 / 11:41 AM / 18 days ago

Fire at Saudi high-speed train station injures at least five

A firefighting helicopter sprays water on a fire at the Haramain high-speed rail station in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, September 29, 2019. REUTERS/Ismail Nofal

DUBAI (Reuters) - A fire broke out in the Haramain high-speed rail station in Saudi Arabia’s coastal city of Jeddah, injuring at least five people, authorities said on Sunday.

The fire, which caused plumes of black smoke to rise from the roof of the station after fire erupted at 12:35 p.m. (0935 GMT), was brought under control about 12 hours later, the civil defence service said.

A cooling process was under way, it said. Civil defence fought the fire with air support, al-Ekhbariya state television footage showed.

Five people were transported to hospital with injuries, the official Twitter account of the Mecca region reported. It said 16 medical teams were at the scene.

Al-Ekhbariya said four people were treated on site and traffic on the railway line had been suspended until further notice for safety reasons.

The 450-km (280-mile) Haramain Railway linking the two holiest cities in Islam, Mecca and Medina, with the Red Sea city of Jeddah, was opened in 2018 and cost 6.7 billion euros ($7.3 billion).

The station is part of efforts to boost tourism revenue as the country seeks to shed its dependence on oil exports.

Reporting by Tuqa Khalid and Lisa Barrington; Editing by Jane Merriman and Peter Cooney

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