The seminar room in the seven-story emergency building at LNJP Hospital where a fire was reported in the early hours of Monday was closed when it occurred, and the vigilance and mental presence demonstrated by facility staff avoided a major accident, a senior official said. The 1,500-bed facility is the largest hospital run by the Delhi government, and also the nerve center of the city’s battle against the coronavirus pandemic.
“The accident happened around 12:30 am and some of our staff saw smoke rising from the seminar room which was closed. Showing vigilance, they immediately opened the room and used small fire extinguishers to put it out as much as possible, until the fire tenders arrived,” a senior hospital official said. The fire broke out in the seminar room, located on the ground floor of the emergency building, and all patients were immediately transferred.
Earlier in the day, Delhi fire service officials said there were no reports of casualties. “The room was closed, and if our staff were not alert, it could turn out to be a major accident. Their attention and presence of mind averted a major fire, as happened in a multi-storey building. The power source was briefly shortened,” the LNJP hospital official said, He’s also a senior doctor, “I got picked up too, but we moved all the patients on that floor to another area as the smoke spread.”
She said the room is used to conduct training sessions for doctors and other staff. The official said its personnel are trained in firefighting and the training was useful.
She added: “Our staff, whether doctors, nurses or others, have also experienced the most challenging times during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has made them even tougher in faith in dealing with the crisis situation.” The official at the facility, located in the heart of Delhi, said the cause of the fire was not yet ascertained, but smoke was coming out of the air conditioning vents, indicating a possible short circuit.
“Six tenders for firefighting have been sent to the site,” Atul Garg, director of the Delhi Fire Department, said earlier, adding that the cause of the fire had been ascertained.