Dozens of firefighters tackle large blaze at London Zoo cafe

It is not yet clear how the fire started but dozens of firefighters are battling to put it out

The zoo said an aardvark, called Misha, had died in the fire and that four meerkats were unaccounted for.

ZSL people press officer Emma Edwards said: "The fire is in the adventure shop and cafe and the closest animals are in the children's zoo, a petting zoo with meerkats, porcupines, goats, pigs and other farmyard animals".

The zoo will be closed Saturday.

One person was taken to hospital and eight were treated at the scene for injuries.

A spokesperson for the zoo confirmed animals were in the vicinity but did not comment on their safety.

Pictures showed the brightly coloured Adventure Cafe with blackened walls and smoke pouring out of its windows. "We had our vet team on site immediately but sadly there was nothing that they could do for Misha", Jermey said.




London Fire Brigade later posted on Twitter, saying that the blaze was now "under control", but that firefighters were still on the scene, and would remain there throughout the morning to continue "damping down" the fire.

"We are all naturally devastated by this, but are immensely grateful to the fire brigade, who reacted quickly to the situation to bring the fire under control. The zoo with be open tomorrow, Sunday 24 December, from 10am".

The cause of the fire is not yet known.

He also added: "What we don't know is what, if any, animals were involved".

"When they arrived, our crews were faced with a very well developed fire", station manager David George told NBC News.

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