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(LEAD) Blaze breaks out at Cheonan hotel, casualties unconfirmed

19:11 January 14, 2019

(ATTN: UPDATES with details; CHANGES headline; ADDS photo)

CHEONAN, South Chungcheong Province, Jan. 14 (Yonhap) -- A huge fire tore through a 21-story hotel in Cheonan, South Chungcheong Province, on Monday.

Fifteen guests and 42 employees were reportedly staying at the Ramada Encore Cheonan hotel when the fire broke out at around 4:56 p.m.

No casualities have yet been reported.

Plumes of smoke come out of the Ramada Encore Cheonan hotel in Cheonan, South Chungcheong Province, on Jan. 14, 2019 in this photo provided by a local resident. (Yonhap)

At least 15 guests and two firefighters suffered smoke inhalation and were sent to a nearby hospital.

Dozens of firefighters were still trying to put out the blaze as of 6:30 p.m.

The hotel, which has a total of 420 rooms, opened in September last year.

lcd@yna.co.kr
(END)

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