News

Actions

Fire at Guatemala orphanage kills at least 28

Posted: 9:46 AM, Mar 08, 2017
Updated: 2017-03-09 09:18:02-05

SAN JOSE PINULA, Guatemala (AP) — Hospital officials say the death toll in a fire at a youth shelter in Guatemala has risen to 28 after several more girls died overnight of severe burns.

Doctors had warned the severity of the burns suffered by many victims put their lives at risk. Nineteen girls were found dead at the scene Wednesday, and spokesmen for two hospitals in Guatemala City said nine more died over night. Dozens more remain under treatment.

The fire started after a mass escape. Dozens of teens held in an overcrowded state-run shelter on the outskirts of Guatemala's capital flooded through the gates Tuesday evening, most only to be caught and locked down in their dorms.

On Wednesday morning someone set fire to mattresses in the girls' section of the rural campus, authorities said. The blaze quickly spread through two dorms.