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Fire hits Myanmar hospital, patients evacuated on stretchers

Fire hits Myanmar hospital, patients evacuated on stretchers
Rescuers carry a patient on a stretcher after a fire broke out at Yangon General Hospital, in Yangon, Myanmar, August 13, 2018. REUTERS/Ann Wang   -   Copyright  ANN WANG(Reuters)
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By Poppy McPherson and Shoon Naing

YANGON (Reuters) – A fire broke out in a hospital in Myanmar’s largest city of Yangon late on Monday, forcing staff to evacuate patients on stretchers and in wheelchairs, rescuers said.

There were no immediate reports of deaths or injuries from the blaze that started in a room in Yangon General Hospital’s cancer department, a fire department official said.

Smoke rose from the colonial-era building in the city centre. Emergency crews removed medical equipment as staff waited in pitch-black corridors in other parts of the hospital after a power cut.

About 60 patients on stretchers and in wheelchairs were evacuated from the ward, emergency worker Thet Lin said.

“It (the fire) is at the cancer department. It started from a vacant room. I haven’t received any information on deaths or injuries from a preliminary report,” the deputy chief of staff at the fire services department, Ye Htut, told Reuters by phone.

Firefighters have not yet determined the cause of fire, he added.

(Additional reporting by Shoon Naing; Editing by Andrew Heavens)

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