At least eighteen individuals together with 16 COVID-19 patients died in a fire at a hospital at Bharuch in Gujarat in the early hours of Saturday, officers mentioned.
IMAGE: Fire breaks out in Patel Welfare Covid Hospital. Photograph: PTI Photo
The state authorities mentioned a judicial inquiry shall be performed into the fire that destroyed the Intensive Care Unit of Patel Welfare Hospital, run by a charitable belief.
“Sixteen coronavirus patients and two nursing staff were either charred to death or died due to suffocation inside a COVID-19 unit,” (*18*) of Police Rajendrasinh Chudasama mentioned.
As many as 50 patients had been present process remedy on the COVID-19 facility on the bottom ground when fire broke out in the ICU round 1 am, in all probability due to quick circuit, mentioned a hospital official.
The fire was doused inside an hour. Local individuals and the kin of patients helped in the rescue operation throughout which dozens of patients had been shifted to different amenities by ambulance. Some had been introduced out of the constructing on wheelchairs or on make-shift stretchers of fabric.
The four-storey designated COVID-19 hospital stands on the Bharuch-Jambusar freeway, 190 km from Ahmedabad.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani introduced ex-gratia support of Rs 4 lakh to the subsequent of kin of the deceased.
He additionally directed Additional Chief Secretary (Labour) Vipul Mittra and Commissioner of Municipalities Administration Rajkumar Beniwal to conduct inquiry. The two IAS officers arrived on the website on Saturday afternoon and visited the ICU.
The authorities may even institute a judicial inquiry into the tragedy, Rupani instructed reporters.
Vadodara Range Inspector General of Police Harikrishna Patel additionally visited the hospital. Teams of Forensic Science Laboratory and state-owned energy distributor Dakshin Gujarat Vij Company additionally reached the spot.
Minister of State for Health Kumar Kanani instructed reporters that round the clock use of air conditioners and ventilators has elevated the chance of fires at hospitals.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah expressed grief over the incident.
“Pained by the loss of lives due to a fire at a hospital in Bharuch. Condolences to the bereaved families,” Modi tweeted.
“I am extremely saddened by the fire accident at a hospital in Bharuch, Gujarat. I express my deepest condolences to the families of all the people who lost their lives in this accident and pray for the speedy recovery of the injured,” Shah mentioned in a tweet.
There had been chaotic scenes exterior the hospital because the authorities tried to settle down the wailing kin of the victims who blamed the hospital administration for the tragedy.
Inside, there have been gut-wrenching sights as some patients had been charred to dying past recognition on their beds or stretchers.
“The fire was so intense that the ICU ward was almost burnt to the ground. All the equipment inside, including ventilators and the fridge used to store medicines and also the beds were incinerated,” a witness mentioned.
A relative of a affected person who was shifted to the civil hospital was seen searching for his case file in a heap of ashes. “I am looking for the file so that doctors where he was taken can start his treatment immediately,” she mentioned.
Earlier on March 26, 4 patients had died whereas shifting after a fire broke out at a hospital in Surat.