Ten disabled children suffocated at orphanage on fire
Ten disabled children have died in a fire at Haapsalu orphanage in the Baltic country of Estonia. When rescuers arrived at the accident site, the wooden building was already ablaze.
According to news agencies' reports, the old building housed 9 adults and 37 children, deprived of parental care, as well as children who were placed in the orphanage, according to the parents application. All of them had severe disability, 24 of them had to use wheelchairs.
An orphanage worker, who asked not to call her name in the local newspaper, said she managed to save one child, but the flames had spread so quickly no one could even imagine.
Once again it has appeared too late that the Haapsalu orphanage did no have an automatic fire extinguishing system, which, according to safety rules in Estonia, is mandatory at public homes with elderly people or persons with disabilities.
Estonia's Prosecutor General, Norman Aas, said early Tuesday on air of the Estonian Public TV that his office did not exclude any version of the cause of the fire. Meanwhile Russian portal Vesti.ru reported that a former pupil, registered in a psychiatric clinic, could set the children's home in Haapsalu on fire. However, the online portal did not specify its source.
In 2007, 25 people died, when a similar fire through carelesness broke out at Alsunga old people care centre in neigboring Latvia.