According to his statements, the fire allegedly started “at the level of the auxiliary heating” before spreading through the housing. A 4-year-old boy had lost his life and at least 21 people had been taken care of by the emergency services after suffering from burns or smoke inhalation. In a statement, the Marseille public prosecutor’s office indicated that some of the injured had been able to leave the hospital and that the health of all the victims was “improving”.
This refers to the occupant of the apartment where the fire started, who was heard during a custody. Seriously burned with second-degree burns “on several parts of the body”, he explained that he had been “awakened by the fire” and “tried in vain to extinguish it”, while “alerting the building’s residents”. According to the Marseille public prosecutor’s office, the investigation also revealed “the precarious housing conditions” of the occupants of this apartment, as it was the subject of an “illegal occupation”.
A fact that would be far from isolated in the Kalliste estate according to many observers. “The truth is that it is no longer in a good state at all. It’s one of the oldest estates in Marseille and its residents from the northern districts have been neglected by the city’s policies”, he added.
The investigation will now have to “determine the circumstances and exact causes of the fire”, as well as “specify the housing conditions and the state of the electrical installation” of the building.