Medical staff members remove a dead body from a vehicle upon arriving at the Civil Hospital in Ahmedabad after a fire broke early in the morning in the intensive care unit of the Shrey Hospital. AFP
A fire killed eight coronavirus patients at a hospital in western India early Thursday, officials said.
Firefighters and 15 fire engines contained the fire to the intensive care unit at Shrey Hospital and it was extinguished in half an hour, fire officer Yusuf Khan said.
Thirty-five patients were shifted to other hospitals, he said.
Rajiv Kumar Gupta, a Gujarat state government official, told reporters that an electrical short-circuit appeared to be the cause of the fire in the city of Ahmedabad.
He also said one paramedic was being treated for burns received while trying to douse the flames.
Fires are common in buildings in India because of poor safety standards with inadequate fire extinguishers, smoke detectors and fire alarm systems.Associated Press
The United States now advises against travelling to India, even for those fully vaccinated, while Britain has added India to its "red list". Hong Kong and New Zealand have banned flights.
India is seeing infections spread at a slower pace than last month, when daily infections touched a record high of 97,894 cases. India is averaging more than 70,000 cases daily so far this month.
The Health Ministry registered another 74,383 infections in the past 24 hours. India is expected to become the pandemic’s worst-hit country in coming weeks, surpassing the U.S., where more than 7.7 million infections have been reported.
Even as western Maharashtra and the three southern states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka remain the worst-hit regions with nearly 64% of fatalities and 55% of active cases, the virus is spreading fast in the country's vast hinterlands.
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