Moscow hospital fire kills 38
A fire has swept through a psychiatric hospital in a Moscow village, killing 36 patients and 2 doctors.
The blaze, which broke out around 02:00 local time (22:00 GMT) on Friday morning, consumed the building incredibly quickly, taking the lives of many sedated patients still in their beds.
Firefighters were forced to take a detour to the area as a ferry service was closed, causing them to arrive an hour after the blaze broke out, instead of an estimated 20 minutes.
Health Ministry officials stated that the hospital housed patients with severe mental disorders.
Only three people managed to escape the building in Ramensky, some 50 miles outside of Moscow. Among the survivors are two patients and one nurse, according to reports.
The building was constructed of brick with wooden beams and a wooden annex and when firefighters finally arrived, the entire one-storey hospital was said to be engulfed in flames.
Early reports claimed that the hospital had locked doors but the surviving nurse has declared these rumours to be untrue. There were, however, bars on the windows which may have been a factor in many of the deaths in this horrific incident.
Fire officials are investigating the cause of the fire, with the source still unknown. A survivor told reporters that a recently-admitted patient smoked constantly in a common room, despite nurses ordering him to stop. Other suspected causes include a short circuit and violations of fire regulations.
Russia is known to have a poor safety record, with many deaths from fire in recent years. Nearly 12,000 deaths were reported in 2012. The people killed in this fire are all believed to be local and range in age from 20 to 76.