Fire in Adelaide motel that left residents with burns was not suspicious, police say

A fire in an Adelaide motel that left three men with serious burns has been deemed non-suspicious, with investigators instead determining that the blaze was sparked by batteries recharging.

Emergency services were called to the Comfort Hotel Adelaide Meridien on Melbourne Street just after 6:30am on Sunday.

Firefighters rescued about 15 people from intense flames within the 95-room, multi-storey complex.

Crews used ladders and an aerial lift to collect stranded guests from balconies, because flames had blocked access to a fire escape.

Seven people were taken to hospital for treatment, including several in a critical condition.

A man in his 50s and two others in their 40s were admitted to the burns unit at the Royal Adelaide Hospital.

About 50 firefighters worked to extinguish the blaze, which started on the second floor.

After initial suspicions, SA Police later confirmed the fire was not deliberately lit.

“We’re not looking for an arsonist — it’s not suspicious in the [sense of being] deliberately lit, but the circumstances are unusual,” SA Police Assistant Commissioner John Venditto said on Monday.

“We’re leaving that to MFS and SAPOL fire techs before we can announce what it was.”

A fire truck outside a hotel with people walking in the street
About 50 firefighters responded to the blaze on Melbourne Street.(ABC News: Eric Tlozek)

Police identified the exact cause as batteries recharging.

“SafeWork SA are conducting further enquiries regarding the matter,” SA Police said.

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