“There was so much smoke that it was hard for people to approach (the building),” said one passerby in an interview with a local television news outlet. “Even from 10 meters away, it was frightening.”
|A firefighter evacuates patients from the Sejong Hospital in Miryang, South Gyeongsang Province, on Friday morning, after a fire broke out there at 7:30 a.m. (Yonhap)|
The fire occurred around 7:30 a.m. at Sejong Hospital’s emergency room and quickly spread to other parts of the hospital, according to authorities.
The death toll rose to 41 as of 12:52 p.m. All 94 patients of the elderly nursing home adjacent to the hospital are thought to have been evacuated safely.
“My father works at Sejong Hospital’s funeral hall,” said a Twitter user. “I went there myself and we all worked to evacuate the people at the nursing home, but I still worry about the people inside the main hospital building.”
혈육이 거동을 못하는 상태로 병원에 나흘째 입원 중이라 밀양 화재 소식 너무 마음이 무겁다...— 철관음 (@butwhatsit2u) 2018년 1월 26일
“Sejong Hospital is located right in front of my house,” said an Instagram user. “It’s a hospital that’s five minutes away. My parents would go if they got ill. I can’t stop crying,” the user added.
“My mother is at the site and she says it is total chaos,” another Twitter user said.