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37 Dead After Russia Hospital Fire

  • VOA News

Russian officials say at least 37 people have died in a fire that swept through a psychiatric hospital in northwest Russia, the second such incident in Russia this year.

Officials in the region of Novgorod said Friday that at least one worker trying to save patients from the blaze was among the dead. Of about 60 people believed to be in the facility when the fire broke out, at least 20 were safely evacuated.

Reports say the fire may have started with a patient who was smoking in bed.

Officials say the fire spread quickly through the single-story wooden structure, which housed an all-male population.

In April, fire ravaged a psychiatric hospital near Moscow, killing 38 people. The incident raised questions about fire safety and emergency escape plans at such facilities.