12/21/12 — Fire reported in patient room at WMH

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Fire reported in patient room at WMH

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on December 21, 2012 1:47 PM

A Thursday night fire in a patient room at Wayne Memorial Hospital was extinguished quickly and no one was seriously injured, officials said.

Cause of the fire, which started around 10 p.m. on the second floor, was a patient smoking in bed, said Georgia Dees, director of public relations.

"There were 26 patients on that floor at the time," she said. "Because of smoke, 22 of those patients were relocated to other floors.

"The fire department responded, cleared the air and patients were moved back to their rooms."

While no injuries resulted, two nurses were treated, she added.

"Two nurses who were instrumental in putting the fire out and evacuating patients were evaluated in the emergency department for smoke and dry chemical inhalation and then went home," she said. "The patient whose action started the fire was examined by a staff physician and all other patients were examined by nursing staff.

This was the first instance of a fire in a patient's room at the hospital, Mrs. Dees noted, crediting staff with responding quickly.

"Staff responded as trained in our regular fire drills and everything went smoothly," she said. "What could have been a very bad situation was minimized, thanks to appropriate staff response an quick thinking and action on their part."

Damage to the patient room was minimal, she said, adding that a non-employee who was doing contract work in the hospital at the time of the fire had also assisted in removing the burning bedding from the site.

"Environmental Services staff did an excellent job getting the area cleaned and fit for patients to return to their rooms with minimal upset," she said.