Six pa­tients die in hospi­tal fire

> Fire­men res­cue wo­man from Sul­tanah Ami­nah Hospi­tal ICU


JO­HOR BARU: A fire that broke out at the south wing of the Sul­tanah Ami­nah Hospi­tal here yes­ter­day claimed the lives of six pa­tients while 10 hospi­tal staff were in­jured.

The blaze broke out about 8.55am and was brought un­der con­trol by 11.30am.

Jo­hor Fire and Res­cue Depart­ment di­rec­tor Oth­man Ab­dul­lah said the depart­ment re­ceived a call at about 8.50am and 10 fire en­gines and 166 fire­fight­ers were rushed to the scene.

The six pa­tients – four fe­males and two males – who died had been ad­mit­ted to the hospi­tal’s in­ten­sive care unit (ICU) and were on ven­ti­la­tors.

Po­lice iden­ti­fied the de­ceased as K. Lo­gaswaran and Yu­sof Has­san, 70, and M. Kaliama, 23, Neera­maladevi Chan­dran, 24, Cho Lin Feng, 30, and Poh Ah Wah, 60.

A pa­tient iden­ti­fied only as Sup­pamah was the only one res­cued by fire­fight­ers at 10am.

Ac­cord­ing to doc­tors, the seven were crit­i­cally ill pa­tients who were de­pen­dent on ven­ti­la­tors and could not be moved without their beds.

The 10 hospi­tal staff who sus­tained in­juries were treated at a nearby hospi­tal.

Three of them, only iden­ti­fied as Nu­rul Ain (se­vere in­juries), Suhaili (burns) and physio stu­dent Shafiqah (burn in­juries), were ad­mit­ted to Sul­tan Is­mail Hospi­tal.

Prime Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Na­jib Ab­dul Razak said the govern­ment will con­duct a thor­ough in­ves­ti­ga­tion to iden­tify the cause of the fire.

He said the govern­ment would also in­crease se­cu­rity at the hospi­tal.

“Sad to hear the news of some (pa­tients) killed in the fire. Con­do­lences to the fam­i­lies of the vic­tims killed in the Sul­tanah Ami­nah Hospi­tal fire,” he said in a Face­book and Twit­ter post­ing. Time­line of in­ci­dent

8.55am: Fire breaks out at the Sul­tanah Ami­nah Hospi­tal’s south wing. 8.56am: Fire and Res­cue Depart­ment de­ploys 10 fire en­gines and 166 fire­fight­ers. 10am: Fire­men res­cue an ICU pa­tient while 294 pa­tients and 193 hospi­tal staff are evac­u­ated. 11.15am: Bod­ies of six pa­tients re­cov­ered. 11.30am: Blaze com­pletely put out.

Deputy Prime Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Ah­mad Zahid Hamidi, who vis­ited the fam­i­lies of the de­ceased at the hospi­tal yes­ter­day, stressed on the im­por­tance of main­te­nance, in­clud­ing the wiring sys­tem and the ne­ces­sity to up­grade hospi­tal build­ings to pre­vent a re­peat of the tragedy.

Health Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Dr S. Subra­ma­niam, in a state­ment, said the Fire and Res­cue Depart­ment to­gether with other rel­e­vant au­thor­i­ties had man­aged to con­tain the fire from spread­ing be­sides evac­u­at­ing pa­tients.

Sul­tan of Jo­hor Sul­tan Ibrahim Sul­tan Iskan­dar and Jo­hor Per­maisuri Raja Zarith Sofiah Sul­tan Idris Shah were among those who vis­ited the vic­tims at the hospi­tal.

The ruler also per­mit­ted hospi­tal of­fi­cials to use the Royal Ward to house pa­tients who were evac­u­ated.

Pa­tients from the ma­ter­nity ward be­ing evac­u­ated.

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