Chandigarh: Fire at PGI Emergency creates panic, 150 patients evacuated
Chaos prevailed at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER) after fire broke out in an operation theatre on the first floor of the Emergency block, adjacent to the Advanced Trauma Centre in the evening.
The hospital’s fire tender was rushed to the spot at 9:30pm. Another reached within half an hour, said an eyewitness. As thick plumes of smoke engulfed the building, around 150 patients were evacuated from the intensive care unit and the Emergency out-patient department to safer places.
A senior hospital official said no patient was injured. The first and second floors were made operational by midnight, he said.
Windowpanes broken to let out smoke
Though flames did not spread beyond the OT, firefighters had to break the windowpanes on the ground and first floor of the building to let the smoke out. Even as no casualty was reported, four security guards were injured with glass shards when the windowpanes were being broken.
Sources said the fire broke out soon after an operation. A nurse was disposing of used needles in a machine, which led to a spark and fire, they said. The OT was completely charred in the incident.
In February, too, fire had broken out at the gastroenterology ward of Nehru Hospital of the PGIMER. Nearly 50 patients, including six from the ICU, were shifted to other wards. The incident took place during the afternoon when one of the attendant noticed smoke and raised the alarm. A short circuit was suspected to be the reason.