After being transferred to Santa Casa de Belo Horizonte on the night of last Monday (27), to perform in the fire that hit the health unit and left two patients deada sergeant from the Fire Department ended up attending to his own grandmother, 92 years old, who had been hospitalized for 5 days at the scene.
Sergeant Felipe Carvalho Tadeu, 34, arrived at the scene along with other colleagues from the corporation and, initially, helped in the evacuation of those present. During the work, he ended up coming across his grandmother, who underwent surgery to remove her left leg due to diabetes.
According to the corporation, the military found the family member in a delicate situation on the 9th floor – one below where the flames started -, as she was intubated and was already in the process of removing her respirator. “At the time of the meeting, the floor she was on had already been released to keep the patients, not being necessary to move her bed”, detailed the Fire Department in a note.
After finding his grandmother, Sergeant Tadeu stayed for a few moments with the family member and then continued his work at the hospital, rescuing patients and supporting other people present at the scene at the time of the fire, which, according to the corporation, demonstrated the commitment of the Fire Department “to the loved ones of each family”.
Read what we know so far below.
When and why did the fire start?
According to Aihara, the flames started around 8:07 pm, on the tenth floor of Santa Casa, where there is an Intensive Care Unit (ICU).
The Fire Department was called and arrived at the hospital at 20:11 – less than five minutes after the fire started. According to the account of an employee, a small explosion occurred in a piece of equipment, combined with the leakage of oxygen, which started the flames.
How many people died?
THE Santa Casa de Belo Horizonte reaffirms that two patients died as a result of the fire that occurred at the health unit on the night of this Monday (27). The doubt as to the exact number of deceased occurred, as the Civil police reported that, in fact, three bodies were forwarded to Legal Medical Institute (IML).
The Legal, Governance and Planning director of Grupo Santa Casa BH, João Costa Aguiar, reported that before the fire another patient had died and that the body had already been released to family members. However, because of what happened, the corporation chose to take it to the IML.
How was the removal of patients?
Initially, the moments were desperate. Patients even broke some windows due to the tension.
“At the initial moment, the patients, naturally, were very desperate. Due to the situation where we have a combustion involving plastic, we have very black smoke. This smoke, due to the layout itself, the floor configuration, ended up expanding very fast”, says Aihara.
“In that first moment, we had some desperate patients, who ended up breaking some glass, which ended up generating some kind of panic”, reports the lieutenant.
How many people were evacuated from the hospital?
In all, 931 patients were hastily removed from the unit; on the ninth and tenth floors alone there were approximately 200.
How was the treatment for the patients?
Many people who were hospitalized had to be transferred to other hospitals, such as Hospital São Lucas and Hospital de Pronto-Socorro João XXIII.
And what about the employees?
Until the morning of this Tuesday (28), 25 employees were hospitalized, two of them in the Intensive Care Center (ICU).
How long did the firefighting last?
The aftermath was done around 9:15 pm, about an hour after the fire started.
Was there damage to the hospital structure?
According to Lieutenant Pedro Aihara, there was no structural damage. The Civil Defense of Belo Horizonte confirms the information.
Is the Santa Casa de Belo Horizonte back up and running?
Yup. On the same day as the fire, all floors were released for occupancy. Only a part of the tenth floor, where the flames started, remains isolated.
The case continues to be investigated.