At least eight people have been killed after an oxygen machine caused a fire in a private hospital in Turkey’s southeastern Gaziantep province, the hospital confirmed.
The incident took place in the COVID-19 intensive care unit in the Sanko University Hospital where a fire was caused by a high-flow oxygen therapy machine used in the treatment of COVID-19 patients, according to a statement by the university.
Seven patients died on the scene and one died on way to another hospital.
The victims were aged between 65 and 85.
After the explosion, 14 other patients receiving COVID-19 treatment in the unit were referred to various hospitals.
Police and fire service teams were dispatched to the scene.
An investigation has been launched regarding the incident.
Intensive care units across Turkey currently have a 74 percent bed occupancy rate due to the coronavirus outbreak, according to government figures, although medical associations have claimed that hospitals are overrun.
On Friday evening, the health ministry reported 26,410 new cases over the previous 24 hours, bringing the total since March to 1.98 million.