At least 27 dead in massive fire in Osaka, Japan

(CNN) – At least 27 people were killed in a massive fire that struck an Osaka high-rise building Thursday night, a police official said Friday.

All of the deaths occurred on the 24th floor of the building in Nishinomiya, located in Osaka’s old town, the official said.

Officials said Friday morning that 20 people were unaccounted for, down from the 30 they previously announced.

No one has been arrested but the investigation is ongoing, the police official said.

Residents said the fire started on the floor above where they lived. The fourth floor is home to a gym that is part of a university, according to local media.

More than 150 firefighters and first responders responded to the blaze, which broke out around 7:15 p.m. local time. The high-rise, which is located in the heart of the city, was evacuated and a total of 174 people were taken to hospitals.

According to fire officials, the fire was under control around 11:30 p.m. and firefighters continued to search the building Friday morning.

On Friday, residents said the building was equipped with sprinklers, but they’ve since been turned off.

“The building managers used to have warning meters that activated the sprinklers when we went out of a room,” one resident told CNN affiliate NHK. “But since the lights are out, I don’t know where that meter is.”

Another resident told NHK that there are no fire alarms, and there were no instructions for how to react in an emergency.

The news channel later reported that the building has been plagued by problems.

A building employee reached by CNN on Friday said fire officials had told the company that the apartments that had been affected by the blaze were to be fixed by Monday, with help from the city’s fire prevention department.

The employee, who declined to give his name, said he was working at his desk on Thursday evening when he heard about the fire.

“As soon as I heard that, I just went home,” he said.

The cause of the fire is under investigation, according to a police official.

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