Seven people, four of whom were children, were treated for the effects of smoke yesterday when a Calvia hotel had to evacuated because of a fire in the early hours of the morning. The alarm was raised just after 1am when the fire was reported at the Palmanova Hotel. As soon as the fire brigade was alerted, the police were informed and a massive emergency operation was put into immediate action under the control of the 112 emergency centre. The fire started on the fifth floor and fire service sources believe that it was started by a cigarette butt which set a sofa alight. Thick smoke spread quickly along the fifth through and up onto the sixth and seventh floors forcing many of the frightened guests out on to their balconies. As soon as the first fire fighters arrived at the scene and assessed the situation, re-enforcements were called while police and firemen set about smashing the pane glass windows on the ground floor to allow air into the building to disperse the thick smoke. As soon as the smoke started to clear, the emergency teams set about evacuating guests, some of whom had already been overcome by the smoke. Six of the tourists were treated for respiratory problems, four were children and taken to a Palma clinic, and a seventh suffered a drop in blood pressure. At 2.07, one hour after the fire broke out, the situation was under control and guests on the floors worst hit by the smoke, were transfered to the Palmanova Palace. A total of 260 guests were evacuated from the hotel and throughout the day fire inspectors and the Guardia Civil were investigating the scene in order to establish exactly what caused the fire. For the moment, fire investigators suspect that the blaze was caused by a cigarette butt which slowly burnt through the sofa and set it alight. The blaze, in particular the smoke, caused considerable damage to the interior of the building but the hotel hopes to start repair and redecorating work as quickly as possible.


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