A giant aquarium explodes in a Berlin hotel

A giant aquarium, about fifteen meters high and located in the courtyard of a prestigious hotel in Berlin (Germany), burst this Friday, spilling more than a million liters of water, fish and injuring two , police and firefighters said. The AquaDom presents itself on its website as “the largest cylindrical aquarium in the world”.

Nearly 1,500 tropical fish

Its glass walls broke, for reasons still undetermined, around 5:50 a.m. In addition to causing “incredible marine damage”, the incident injured two people. Hit by shrapnel, they were taken to hospital. The cylindrical-shaped aquarium, located in the lobby of the Radisson Blu hotel, contained more than one million liters of water and about 1,500 tropical fish.

“Water and fish spilled on the ground floor” and the hotel was evacuated, a fire department spokesman said. A hundred relief forces were on the spot. The police were using dogs to possibly find people under the debris. The aquarium was not the victim of a simple crack, “it burst”, specified the spokesperson. The police partially closed the adjacent Karl-Liebknecht street, a major artery in central Berlin, to traffic due to an “extreme amount of water on the road”, the capital’s transport company said on his twitter account.

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Renovated a few months ago

Photos and videos circulating on social media, apparently sent by hotel residents, showed the aquarium largely destroyed, with large shards of glass strewn about and water still leaking out. “We heard a cracking noise that woke us up,” said a witness quoted by the Bild newspaper. And to add: “My wife told me “something flew in front of the window”. I went to see and the aquarium which was still there the day before (…) had collapsed”.

The aquarium, which was part of the Sea Life complex, was equipped with a glass elevator allowing visitors to observe sea life from the inside. According to Bild, the explosion was caused by wear and tear on equipment. The AquaDom had however been reopened last summer after a long and costly renovation of 2.5 million euros, recalls the newspaper.

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