Mumbai: A fire broke out on Tuesday evening at Hotel Ripon Palace on Bellasis Road in Nagpada, which was recently turned into a Covid Care Centre and housed 25 suspected patients placed under quarantine.
All 25 were evacuated safely and shifted to another quarantine facility nearby. According to the Mumbai Fire Brigade, the fire in the ground-plus-three-storey building started at around 6 pm. "We received a call about the fire at 6.19 pm.
Around five fire engines, two water tankers and two fighting jets reached the spot at 6.30 pm, and the fire was brought under control within 30 to 45 minutes," said a senior fire brigade officer.
Hotel Ripon Palace is one of the 186 hotels, lodges and guesthouses identified by the BMC across all 24 wards for citizens who have tested positive for Covid but are either asymptomatic or have very mild symptoms, or those who are suspected to have been infected as highrisk contacts of those who have tested positive.
According to initial reports, the fire was confined to the electrical wiring, electrical installations like air conditioner and to wooden furniture on the first floor of the hotel.
All 25 persons quarantined in the hotel building, which falls under BMC's E ward (Byculla, Nagpada and Mumbai central), were safely evacuated and shifted to another facility nearby.
Besides this, two staffers at the centre, who were stranded in the building, were rescued by the Mumbai Fire Brigade team. The Fire Brigade classified it as a level-II fire call. "Most of the quarantined persons were rescued and a search operation was carried out for two staff.
The two staff members at the building were successfully rescued by our team. It is still not clear what caused the fire. We will investigate the cause and submit our report to the BMC at the earliest," said Prabhat Rahangdale, Chief fire officer, Mumbai Fire Brigade.