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.