Three dead in Chennai hospital blaze (Second Lead)

July 23rd, 2011 - 6:25 pm ICT by IANS  

Chennai, July 23 (IANS) Three patients admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) died after a fire broke out at a hospital here early Saturday, hospital officials said.

Fire officers suspect that an electrical short circuiting may have caused the fire at Kilpauk Medical Hospital.

The victims were identified as Tamil Selvi, 45, Krishna Bai, 72, and Nandagopal, 51, senior hospital official S. Geethalakshmi told IANS.

According to Geethalakshmi, of the eight patients undergoing treatment at the ICU, four were in a critical condition before the fire broke out.

Hospital officials said Tamil Selvi and Krishna Bai died soon after the accident, while Nandagopal breathed his last later.

“Around 5 a.m., smoke was noticed in the ICU, located on the ground floor,” the hospital’s medical superintendent R. Sukumar told IANS.

While fire tenders were called, the hospital personnel started wheeling out patients from the ICU, Sukumar said.

The thick smoke reduced the visibility to near zero.

Sukumar said the hospital has constituted a special team of doctors to take care of other ICU patients.

The hospital has also ordered a probe into the accident.

Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa has ordered a payment of Rs.200,000 to the families of the patients who died in the fire.

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