A fire at a Mecca hotel led to the evacuation of at least 1,500 Haj pilgrims on Monday. It is the second such incident in Saudi Arabia in the last few days, even as the kingdom is reeling from a crane crash accident that killed over 100 pilgrims earlier this month.
The fire broke out in a room on the hotel's 11th floor at 2:45 am on Monday, and at least four pilgrims, all from Yemen, were injured in the incident, the local media reported.
The hotel evacuated hundreds of other pilgrims from their rooms as a precautionary measure. The cause of the fire is believed to be a short-circuit, Saudi Gazette reported.
The incident comes just four days after fire broke out at a hotel in Mecca, following which more than 1,000 Asian pilgrims had to be evacuated. As many as two pilgrims were injured in the incident.
The latest mishap came a day ahead of the start of the Haj pilgrimage on Tuesday, in which nearly three million Muslims are expected to gather in Mina, Mecca, and travel to Mount Arafat on Wednesday to mark the Day of Arafat. Muslims will mark Eid al Adha on Thursday in Saudi Arabia and many other nations.
On 11 September, more than 100 pilgrims of various nationalities were killed when a huge crane crashed at the Grand Mosque, marring Saudi Arabia's preparations for the annual Haj pilgrimage.