The six residents who died in the fire of this retirement home for dependent elderly people, located in Milan, were between 69 and 87 years old.
Six residents of a nursing home have died and more than 80 have been hospitalized after a fire broke out at the facility overnight from Thursday to Friday in Milan, northern Italy. The fire broke out shortly before 1:20 a.m. in this nursing home where 167 elderly people live, in a working-class district in the center of the Lombard capital.
“Six people died and many others, intoxicated (by the fumes), were hospitalized. The firefighters saved dozens of other residents,” the firefighters said on Twitter.
Between 69 and 87 years old
The six deceased victims are aged between 69 and 87, according to the Milan daily. Il Corriere della Sera. “Between the smoke and the difficulties of getting around for the elderly, it was a really complicated moment,” Milan fire chief Nicola Micele told the Local Team channel.
“The fire would have started from a room in which two residents died charred”, explained the mayor of Milan Giuseppe Sala, who went there in the morning.
The other deceased victims, a man and three women, are said to have succumbed to the inhalation of toxic fumes. A Milan fire department official, Carlo Cardinali, told AFP that 81 people were hospitalized, including two in serious condition.
An investigation is underway into the causes of the fire and “the most likely hypothesis is that of a short circuit,” national firefighter Luca Cari told AFP.
“In a wheelchair”
In a tweet, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni “expressed all her solidarity with those involved in the fire”, addressed her “sincere condolences to the families of the victims” and wished “a rapid recovery for the injured”. The President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella for his part sent a message to the mayor of Milan to express his “solidarity with the injured and with the rescuers”.
170 residents were evacuated by the rescuers who took them out carrying them “in their arms, one after the other”, explained the mayor of Milan, whose services are looking for solutions to rehouse them, in particular in other nursing homes.
“We saw the elders protect their faces with wet rags, then they were evacuated, some in wheelchairs, others in walkers”, testified for his part a local resident, Lucia, quoted by the Ansa agency.
The three-storey establishment, built in 1920, is a municipal structure managed “for years by a private provider”, underlined the mayor. It is home to elderly people with varying degrees of dependency but not requiring hospital care.
The private operator, Proges, is a cooperative which employs 3,500 people in 300 establishments in Italy. This rest home in Milan was severely bereaved during the first wave of the Covid pandemic in the spring of 2020 with 53 dead, according to Il Corriere della Sera.
Source: BFM TV