Tue. Jun 6th, 2023

Hundreds of 1,500 fish were saved after a giant aquarium installed in a hotel exploded. Officials say that two people were also injured in this accident.

'Hundreds of fish' saved in Berlin aquarium accident
‘Hundreds of fish’ saved in Berlin aquarium accident


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Hundreds of fish of various species were killed in the explosion of a giant aquarium kept in a hotel in the German capital Berlin. On Friday, December 16, two people were also injured when the so-called Aquadome aquarium kept at the Radisson Blu hotel was destroyed.

The marine life attraction at the center of the tourist attraction was hailed as “the world’s largest free-standing cylindrical aquarium”.

How many fish were saved?

At the time of the explosion, the aquarium housed an estimated 1,500 fish. Most of these fish died in the accident. Guests staying at the hotel reported seeing many dead fish among the debris on the aquarium floor. Dead fish were also found in the streets of Berlin in front of the hotel.

Local NTV reports that saltwater or seawater fish can survive out of water for only an hour or two. Out of water, their gills begin to dry out and they are unable to take in oxygen, meaning they suffocate.

The extremely cold temperatures in Berlin on Friday also greatly reduced the chances of survival of these fish. When the accident happened, the temperature in Berlin was minus seven degrees Celsius.

‘Several dozen’ fish alive

According to the Berlin Fire Department, some of the fish survived because of the small puddles that were created by the overflow of a million liters of water in the tank of the aquarium. The fire department wrote on Twitter that “several dozen” fish were found alive in the remains of the tank.

Between 400 and 500 small fish in the basement of the hotel were also saved. The fish had to be relocated after the building’s electricity was cut off for safety reasons. Of these, the freshwater fish were taken to the Berlin Zoo, while the saltwater fish were taken to Sea Life. Sea Life is an aquatic aquarium based in China, with a branch in Berlin.

The Sea Life Aquarium is located in the same building that houses the Radiant Blue Hotel, where the destroyed Aqua Dome was also located. However, Sea Life did not report any damage.

Why did the tank explode?

The collapse of the 16-meter-tall aquarium on Friday morning sent water, fish, glass and other debris pouring into hotel lobbies and the streets of Berlin. Most of the hotel’s guests were not in the lobby at the time of the disaster, and only two people were injured by the broken glass.

Debris clearing efforts continued for the second consecutive day on Saturday. Investigators are now trying to determine the cause of the tank collapse. Officials said Friday that they do not believe the destruction was the result of criminal activity and that the cause was not immediately clear.

Berlin Mayor Fraziska Giffi said the tank had been “recently renovated,” but other officials said preliminary investigations pointed to possible problems with construction materials in the 18-year-old tank.

“Of course the investigation is not complete, but initial indications point to faulty construction materials,” Berlin’s state interior minister Ers Sprenger told news agency dpa.

‘World’s Largest Freestanding Cylindrical Aquarium’

The “Dome Aquarium” building is located just 350 meters from the Berlin Cathedral and houses the so-called Aqua Dome with a sea life aquarium. It is a large tank that was home to around 1,500 species of fish. The aquarium was filled with one million liters of seawater, which was equivalent to 1000 metric tons of water.

A popular tourist attraction, AquaDom is “the world’s largest freestanding cylindrical aquarium,” according to the DomAquaree website. A 10-minute elevator ride to the aquarium was one of the highlights.

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