A massive aquarium exploded in Berlin on Friday, causing glass, water and hundreds of tropical fish to spill out of the Sea Life tourist attraction in the heart of the German capital.
Police said a wave of debris engulfed the building, which also contains a hotel, cafes and a chocolate factory, as a million liters of water gushed out from the basin shortly before 6 am.
Berlin firefighters said two people were slightly injured. They said rescue dogs were searching the building for anyone who might be trapped under the rubble.
Sea Life operators say the 25-meter-tall AquaDom was the largest cylindrical tank in the world and was home to more than a thousand tropical fish before the accident. Among the 80 species of fish he had were bluefish and clownfish, the well-known species from the popular animated movie Nemo world.
“We haven’t been able to walk through the entire first floor yet, which is most likely where these fish are,” said fire department spokesman Adrian Wenzel. But the truth is that the water has completely escaped and about 1,400 fish that were in this tank could not be saved. »
There was speculation that freezing temperatures that dropped to -10 °C overnight caused the tank to crack and then burst under the weight of the water. Police said there was no evidence that the accident resulted from an attack.
Exploding “shrapnel everywhere”
Sandra Weisser, a German MP who was staying at the hotel, said she was woken up by a loud noise and thought there might be an earthquake.
“There are fragments [of glass] Everywhere. “The furniture was flooded, everything. It looked like a war zone,” she said.
The aquarium, which was last updated in 2020, is a major tourist attraction in Berlin. One of the attractions was the 10-minute elevator ride through the tropical reservoir.
Police said about 300 guests and staff were evacuated from the hotel surrounding the pool.