By Ian Neubauer

Firefighters in Brisbane have praised staff for evacuating a Brisbane hotel that was gutted by fire over the weekend.

Hundreds of patrons were forced to flee from the Victory Hotel when fire spread to the upper two floors at around 3:00am on Sunday morning.

Seven patrons were taken to hospital for smoke inhalation but life-threatening injuries were averted by bartenders and bouncers who coordinated a fast and orderly evacuation of the premises.

"If they did not react in the timeframes that were required, I’m sure we would have had fatalities in this structure," Queensland Fire and Rescue spokesperson, Bevan Moore, told the ABC. “It was a difficult fire because of the amount of people, the time of day it was, and the fact it was a basement fire.

“Any fire that is below ground is very difficult and they are dangerous for firefighters to go and attack,” he said.

The fire was extinguished at 4:20am but reignited less than two hours later, causing multiple road closures in the CBD.

An explosion in the basement is believed to have caused the fire.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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