/China orders investigation into fire that kills 21 at Beijing hospital

China orders investigation into fire that kills 21 at Beijing hospital

China has ordered an investigation into a fire that killed 21 people at a Beijing hospital, one of the deadliest in the capital in recent years, but many social media posts about the incident were removed as people questioned the delay. announce the news.
Social media showed dramatic videos of people using tied sheets to climb up walls to escape smoke and flames after the fire broke out around 1 p.m. (0500 GMT) on Tuesday in Changfeng Hospital.
Seventy-one people were evacuated during the rescue. As of 6 p.m., 21 had died, the Beijing Daily reported.
The fire was extinguished in about half an hour, according to local reports.
The Beijing government announced that it will hold a press conference at 12:00 p.m. on Wednesday about the fire. Local media had reported that an investigation was underway.
Authorities blocked access to the hospital on Wednesday. Smashed and burned windows could be seen and there was a heavy police presence at the hospital site, including plainclothes police, according to Reuters witnesses.
Social media posts about the fire circulating in wechat for several hours they were censored or removed, according to Reuters findings. A still-available post criticized the hospital for bragging about its fire-readiness in a February post on its official WeChat account.
“Rescue work at the scene was completed in 3.5 hours, but the public only learned that 21 had died from the fire when it was already after 8pm,” one person wrote on WeChat in a post that was later published. removed.
“It is very disconcerting that little information was known about a fire that killed 21 people in a densely populated major city like Beijing before official notification,” the comment read.
The cause of the fire is being investigated, according to state and local media reports, and there were no further details on the injuries.