Arson investigation after two 'suspicious' fires at Durban hospital
Police are investigating a case of arson following two “suspicious” fires at Durban’s Addington hospital on Thursday.
The KZN Department of Health said in a statement on Friday that two sporadic fires broke out on different floors of the hospital.
The fires were contained before they could cause any serious damage to hospital infrastructure‚ except for smoke residue on the walls.
According to the statement: “In what is believed to be acts of arson‚ the first fire broke out on the 7th floor around 7.30am and the second fire‚ on the 10th floor around 2.30pm.
“Both fires appear to have happened in a similar fashion‚ which raises a high suspicion of classifying them as related acts of sabotage.”
The department said the fires occurred in fire-escape routes next to the lifts‚ where piles of plastic filled with garbage were kept for collection. On both floors‚ the fires were contained by security personnel and other hospital staff members. There were no casualties as a result of the fires or smoke‚ nor were hospital operations disrupted.
KZN health MEC Dr Sibongiseni Dhlomo‚ who visited the hospital‚ said: “There is something amiss here and a suspicion of an act of sabotage is not far-fetched. Both fires occurred on the fire-escape routes in a similar fashion. A case of arson has been opened at Point Police Station and we want the perpetrators to be arrested for gambling with people’s lives and compromising patient safety.”
He said the department would also make moves to improve security at Addington and other hospitals.