One killed and one wounded in oxygen explosion at Ukraine hospital

A view of a hospital ward after an oxygen explosion in the western Ukrainian city of Chernivtsi on Feb 27, 2021. PHOTO: AFP

KYIV (REUTERS)- One person was killed and another wounded in an oxygen explosion at a hospital in the western Ukrainian city of Chernivtsi, Ukraine's emergency service said on Saturday.

The explosion occurred on the second floor of the hospital at lunchtime on Saturday (Feb 27) and 20 people were evacuated, the service said in a statement, which did not specify the cause of the incident.

This is the second incident this month in which patients have died in hospitals due to oxygen flaring.

Earlier in February, three intensive care patients and a ward doctor died in a fire in a hospital treating coronavirus cases in Zaporizhzhya in southeastern Ukraine.

Ukraine has registered more 1.3 million coronavirus cases with 25,893 deaths so far. Chernivtsi is currently among the regions with most new Covid-19 cases.

Coronavirus cases have picked up after a lull during a tight lockdown at the start of the year. The government has set up mobile hospitals in western Ukraine to cope with a sharp spike in cases.

Ukraine on Wednesday started its Covid-19 vaccination campaign, with 159 medical workers getting the initial dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine, the first batch of which came to Ukraine on Tuesday from India.

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