Nursery fire kills four newborns

Aug. 17, 2010 at 11:07 AM

BUCHAREST, Romania, Aug. 17 (UPI) -- Four babies died and nine babies were being treated for injuries after fire swept through a Romanian maternity hospital's intensive care unit, officials said.

A prosecutor's preliminary investigation indicated the fire at Giulesti Maternity Hospital in Bucharest began Monday after an air conditioning system's electrical cable began burning behind a wooden closet in the intensive care unit, CNN reported. The preliminary report said the cable wasn't properly installed and isolated properly.

Prosecutors said the fire burned slowly for about an hour before any medical personnel entered the intensive care room, which wasn't staffed at the time. Prosecutors were questioning 15 employees, including the nurse who was supposed to be in the room at the time, CNN reported.

In addition, the staff didn't evacuate any babies in the five minutes between the time they called emergency personnel and firefighters arrived at the scene, fire department spokeswoman Anca Onofrei said.

All the babies have been identified, hospital officials said, but DNA tests would be run to confirm their identities.

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