Fire at rest home in central China kills 38 people

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Fire at rest home in central China kills 38 people

China’s official Xinhua News Agency reported that a rescue operation was still underway on Tuesday morning and that the cause of the fire was unclear.

By (AP)

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Published: Tue 26 May 2015, 12:03 PM

Last updated: Thu 25 Jun 2015, 9:26 PM

Beijing — A fire swept through a rest home in central China, killing 38 people and injuring six, Chinese authorities said on Tuesday.

The fire broke out Monday night in an apartment building being used as a privately run rest home in the city of Pingdingshan in Henan province, according to a statement from the province’s work safety administration. Two of the injured were in serious condition, the statement said.

China’s official Xinhua News Agency reported that a rescue operation was still underway on Tuesday morning and that the cause of the fire was unclear.

Xinhua said the building housed 51 elderly people and quoted one survivor, 82-year-old Zhao Yulan, as saying only two of the 11 people living in her room made it out alive. Some of the remains of people killed in the fire were burned beyond recognition, Xinhua said.

Chinese President Xi Jinping urged rescue personnel to urgently aid the injured and victims’ families and determine the cause of the fire as well as who was responsible, state broadcaster CCTV said.

With a rapidly aging population and under-resourced social security net, China faces increasing pressure to provide safe and affordable care for the elderly.

In 2013, a disgruntled resident set fire to a rest home in the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, killing himself and 10 others.

 



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