2 people hurt as huge Berlin aquarium bursts

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A giant aquarium containing around 1,500 tropical fish burst in Berlin on Friday, flooding a hotel lobby and a nearby street and leaving two people injured, emergency services said.

It remains unclear what caused the incident at the 14-metre high AquaDom aquarium at around 5:50am, police said.

“A million litres of water and all the fish inside spilt onto the ground floor” of the hotel complex housing the aquarium, a spokesman for the Berlin fire department told AFP.

Two people suffered injuries from glass splinters and had to be hospitalised, the spokesman added.

More than 100 emergency workers were sent to the scene, which was scattered with glass and other debris. Emergency services asked around 350 hotel guests to pack their belongings and leave amid concerns that there could be structural damage.

The cylindrical AquaDom, which opened in 2004, was a popular tourist attraction in the German capital.

It is located in the foyer of a Radisson Blu hotel and had a clear-walled elevator built inside to be used by visitors to the Sea Life leisure complex.

According to the Sea Life website, the AquaDom is the largest cylindrical, freestanding aquarium in the world.

Sea Life Berlin said in a statement that its team was shocked by the incident and was trying to obtain more information from the owners of the AquaDom about what had caused the incident.

The company, which had offered glass elevator rides through the AquaDom aquarium, said it would also remain closed until further notice.—AFP