Fire in West Bengal state-run hospital kills 3

Fire in West Bengal state-run hospital kills 3

A child and two caretakers were killed in a fire at a state-run hospital at
Murshidabad in Bengal on Saturday.

All of them were asphyxiated by dense smoke that enveloped two of the hospital’s wards, including the paediatric ward.

While B R Sathpathy, director of the state health services, admitted to the deaths of two ayahs, unofficial sources confirmed the death of a newborn, who was admitted in the adjacent neonatal ward.

Although the fire did not spread far, the dense smoke caused panic among patients and their families, leading to a stampede and leaving around 50 injured.

“A fire broke out in the hospital and three casualties have been reported. The fire was brought under control soon,” Chief Medical Officer of Health S Saha said. Hospital officials and eyewitnesses said that smoke engulfed the entire hospital. Panic-stricken patients and their family members ran for safety, causing a stampede.

The tense situation escalated with family members scrambling to get their newborns at the Sick Newborn Care Unit to safety.

Hospital staff and fire services personnel managed to bring out most of the patients from the hospital building.

Emergency exit locked  
Initial reports suggested that the main exit of the hospital’s emergency was locked, preventing patients, family members and hospital staff from coming out of the building after the fire broke out.

A health department team was dispatched to ensure that measures are taken to bring the situation under control and normal services resume at the earliest.

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