Twenty-one people, including two children, have been injured after a man set himself and a bank on fire.
Six are thought to have life-threatening injuries.
Victorian Police told Business Insider the man allegedly set fire to the Commonwealth Bank in Springvale, Melbourne around 11.30am.
“The man has been taken to hospital in a serious condition, under police guard,” a police spokesperson told Business Insider.
“Twenty members of the public will be taken to hospital for/ in a serious condition.”
Greater Dandenong acting inspector Jackie Poida has confirmed that the man lit himself on fire with an “accelerant” before entering the bank.
“Emergency services responded as quick as they could and I’m sure that effort has contributed to less serious injuries,” she said.
According to The Age took firefighters longer to the victims inside the building because the bank’s security shutters came down, trapping the people inside.
The bank has been cordoned off and Springvale Road has been closed in both directions.
State Health Commander Paul Holman said Ambulance Victoria’s Emergency Response Plan was raised to the highest level in response to the incident, dispatching 25 ambulance vehicles to the scene.
“Ambulance Victoria liaised with the Alfred, Monash and Dandenong Hospitals to confirm how many patients each could accept,” he told The Age.
Here’s the statement the Commonwealth Bank sent to Business Insider on the incident.
“We can confirm that there was an incident at our Springvale branch today,” the bank said.
“Our first priority is the safety of our staff and customers and as a result the branch will remain closed for the rest of the day. Our response team is on site, and we are working closely with local authorities and emergency services.”
Business Insider is waiting to hear back from The Alfred Hospital where some of the patients have been admitted.
More to come.
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