Fire at Moscow hospital, hundreds evacuated
He said the fire appeared to have started in the basement, filling a 23-story building with smoke.india Updated: Jan 25, 2006 18:20 IST
A fire broke out at a Moscow hospital building on Wednesday, forcing the evacuation of hundreds of patients, an emergency official said.
The blaze broke out just before 10 am at the Oncological Centre in a southern district of the Russian capital, said Viktor Beltsov, of the Emergency Situations Ministry.
He said the fire appeared to have started in the basement, filling a 23-story building at the large complex with smoke and forcing firefighters to evacuate some 500 people.
No casualties were reported, and no smoke or fire was visible from the outside of the building.
Ekho Moskvyi radio reported that gas canisters had begun to explode in the building, hindering efforts to extinguish the fire.
Firefighters brought the blaze under control about an hour later, Russian news reports said.
"During repairs of a pipe and welding, heat insulation on one of the pipes was ignited from a spark," Yevgeny Chernyshov, head of Moscow fire service, said in televised comments.