Fire at Azerbaijani drug rehab facility kills dozens

An Azerbaijani firefighter works at the site of a fire at a drug rehabilitation center in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Friday. Photo by Vugar Amrullayev/EPA-EFE

March 2 (UPI) — A fire broke out Friday at a drug rehabilitation center in Azerbaijan, killing at least 24 people, government officials said.

The fire, field by strong winds, started just before dawn and burned through the wooden, single-story hospital in Baku for 3 hours. The ward housed bedridden patients.

A statement from Azerbaijani health and interior officials said emergency workers rescued 34 people from the facility, three of whom were hospitalized for injuries.

Investigators believed a short circuit in the electrical system caused the fire.


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