Ten people die as blaze rages through Romanian hospital | News | DW | 14.11.2020

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Ten people die as blaze rages through Romanian hospital

A fire spread through the intensive care ward of a Romanian hospital where COVID-19 patients were receiving treatment. Officials have said a short circuit appears to be the likely cause.

Emergency services at the scene of a fire that spread through a hospital in Romania.

Emergency services at the scene of a fire that spread through a hospital in Romania.

A fire at a Romanian hospital treating COVID-19 patients killed 10 people and critically injured seven others, authorities said on Saturday.

The blaze spread through the intensive care ward designated for COVID-19 patients at the public hospital in the northern city of Piatra Neamt.

Irina Popa, the spokeswoman for the local Emergency Situations Inspectorate, said all but one of the dead or injured were hospital patients. Eight of the victims died in the flames and two others were pronounced dead after being evacuated from the hospital.

Romanian Health Minister Nelu Tataru told local media the fire was "most likely triggered by a short circuit."

The burnt out facade of the hospital in Piatra Neamt

The burnt out facade of the hospital in Piatra Neamt.

Piatra Neamt is about 353 kilometers (219 miles) north of Romania's capital, Bucharest.

Prosecutors said they would open an investigation to determine how the blaze started.

It is the country's biggest since a 2015 fire at a nightclub in Bucharest that killed 65 people.

Romania has reported 353,185 coronavirus cases and 8,813 deaths.

Just under 13,000 people with COVID-19 were hospitalized across Romania on Saturday, including 1,172 in intensive care units.

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jf/sms (AP, AFP, Reuters)