Vets and rescue workers are scrambling to save as many tropical fish as possible after a massive aquarium exploded in Berlin.
Despite their best efforts, about 1,500 fish living in the Aquadome tourist attraction died after the disaster. Hundreds more in other aquariums were rescued by responders.
“It’s a great tragedy that 1,500 fish don’t have a chance to survive,” said Almut Neumann, municipal officer for environmental issues for Berlin’s Mitte district. “The goal of the afternoon was obviously to save the fish in the remaining tanks”.
By 5:45 a.m. Friday, an estimated 264,000 gallons of water had flowed from the Aquadome, causing extensive damage to the building that houses the Radisson Blu Hotel, cafes and a chocolate factory. Firefighters said two people suffered minor injuries due to the flooding.
Berlin’s Mitte district government confirmed on Twitter that some of the struggling fish “at the bottom of the aquarium” may still be alive. The aquarium has 80 species of fish including blue tang and clown fish.
As crews began cleaning up the wreckage, officials worked with veterinarians to rescue 400 to 500 small fish from special tanks under the hotel lobby, which were not getting enough oxygen due to the shutdown.
The fish were transferred to other aquariums in the Sea Life Aquarium.
Several organizations, including the Berlin Zoo, have volunteered to collect live fish.
– With information from the “New York Post”.