Ten patients were killed in a fire accident at a hotel which was converted to a COVID-19 care facility in Andhra Pradesh’s Vijaywada, authorities said on Sunday.
“The incident took place around 5 am. Around 22 patients are being treated in hospital. We are evacuating the entire building. The reason of fire appears to be a short circuit, as per the preliminary report, but we will have to ascertain this,” said Krishna District Collector Mohammad Imtiaz told NDTV.
The short circuit took place in an air-conditioner on the ground floor, police told Indian Express. As the fire spread to the upper floors, seven patients panicked and jumped off the building. Two others died of asphyxiation.
There were 30 patients undergoing treatment at the facility and 10 hospital staff, the Press Trust of India reported.
“15-20 people have been injured in the incident. They have been rushed to hospital. 2-3 of them are critical,” a police officer told NDTV.
Last week, eight coronavirus patients had died in a huge fire that broke out in the intensive care ward of a private hospital in Ahmedabad.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy expressed shock over the incident and ordered an in-depth probe. He also announced an ex-gratia of Rs 50 lakh to the kin of the deceased.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he discussed the situation with the chief minister and assured all possible support.