JOHANNESBURG—Nearly 700 sufferers are being evacuated Saturday from Johannesburg’s Charlotte Maxeke Hospital, the place a fire blazed in a single day by way of components of the power in South Africa’s largest metropolis.
No accidents or casualties have been reported. The hearth has been contained however the hospital has been closed for seven days, stated David Makhura, premier of Gauteng province the place Johannesburg is positioned.
Four hundred sufferers have already been moved to different public hospitals within the metropolitan space and a further 270 sufferers might be moved y the top of Saturday, Makhura stated.
Early Saturday morning the fireplace induced the third flooring of the hospital’s parking storage to break down.
Sixty firefighters have been battling the blaze by way of the night time. The hearth began Friday morning and had been doused by the afternoon however then it reignited within the night and continued burning in a single day.
The hearth has induced intensive harm to the hospital, which has greater than 1,000 beds and serves Johannesburg, a metropolis of 6 million folks, and the encompassing Gauteng province. It is among the largest public hospitals within the nation.
It can be a delegated remedy heart for COVID-19 in Gauteng. According to Makhura, the hospital had 13 COVID-19 sufferers, two in ICU and 11 typically wards on the time of the fireplace. They have all been transferred to different hospitals.
“The fire has been contained into some areas. We are shutting down the hospital as a precautionary measure because there is a lot of smoke that went into other areas, including wards,” stated Makhura.
The hearth began in a storeroom for dry surgical provides, in response to officers.
Firefighters reported that the blaze re-started from smoldering medical provides, together with provides of non-public protecting gear utilized by workers treating sufferers with COVID-19, Makhura stated. An investigation into the fireplace might be launched, he stated.
“Our firefighters have been receiving help from others in neighboring municipalities. It has been a tedious process trying to move patients. At first, we moved them to wards that were far away from the fire but we started to evacuate them,” stated Gauteng well being spokeswoman Kwara Kekana. “That is still a process that is ongoing, we are now referring all patients to other hospitals.”
By Mogomotsi Magome