UPDATE: Australia’s Olympic Team Boss has raised some startling revelations after our athletes were evacuated from the Olympic Village when a fire broke out.
The smoke alarms did not go off, which means the building was only cleared out after someone noticed the stairwell filling with smoke.
Chef De Mission Kitty Chiller has told Channel Nine she has since found out the alarms were silenced while maintenance was carried out in a neighbouring building.
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She said no one told the Australian team the alarms had been switched off.
Athletes were allowed back in after 30 minutes but Ms Chiller said people carrying out emergency repairs have been ‘lighting up’, despite a no smoking policy.
She told Nine “there is a lot of rubbish in our building left over from the works and left over from various contractors coming in and out”.
“There is also a lot of contractors and a lot of workers smoking, what we think happened is that a cigarette was perhaps thrown into a rubbish bin and it caught alight.
Ms Chiller is meeting with the “most senior people from the Village, from Rio 2016 and IOC officials”.
She’s asked that as a minimum standard “the fire alarms are unsilenced and put back on”.
“We’ve also asked that all the rubbish is cleared, we’ve asked for another reminder to go out to all workers and all volunteers that there is no smoking in this Village and we’ve also asked, at least for tonight, that we have a guard or some personnel on every floor so that all our athletes and officials who are in the Village can sleep safely tonight” Ms Chiller said.
EARLIER: Australian athletes have been evacuated from the Olympic Village in Rio de Janeiro after a fire broke out..
It is believed the blaze started in the basement or car park area of the building.
The flames were extinguished quickly but smoke did fill a stairwell. There is no word yet on the cause.
The athletes were allowed back in after about 30 minutes.
The fire is believed to have started in the second underground floor of the building but it is not known at this stage how it started.
The Australian team had previously complained about the state of the accommodation for its athletes at the village.
Chef De Mission Kitty Chiller is expected to address the media on Saturday morning.
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