Rio 2016: Australia team safe after Olympic Village fire evacuation

The Australian team said they evacuated their building at the Olympic Village in Rio de Janeiro because of a fire in the basement on Friday, one week before the Games open.

Reuters July 30, 2016 10:18:56 IST
Rio 2016: Australia team safe after Olympic Village fire evacuation

The Australian team said they evacuated their building at the Olympic Village in Rio de Janeiro because of a fire in the basement on Friday, one week before the Games open.

The fire, which filled the stairwells of the building with smoke, caused no injuries and the team was back in the building after around half an hour, a team spokesman said.

Rio 2016 Australia team safe after Olympic Village fire evacuation

Members of Australian delegation pose for a selfie photo at Olympics village in Rio de Janeiro. Reuters

It was the latest incident in a tense week at the Olympic Village, where Australia and several other teams complained about unfinished and dirty rooms before moving in.

"We are all accounted for," said Mike Tancred, director of media and communications for the Australian Olympic Committee, adding that the fire did not appear to have been serious.

"It was a good drill for us. We cleared all 23 floors of the building," he added.

A spokesman for Rio's fire department declined to comment.

Kitty Chiller, the head of the Australian delegation, had complained on Sunday about exposed wiring and blocked toilets, saying accommodation at the Village was "not safe or ready" for the Games, which open on 5 August.

Chiller had initially refused to let her team stay in the Village, but moved athletes in this week after organizers deployed a task force of 600 workers to tackle repairs.

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