hospital fire
© Blagoveschensk emergency service
Answering if he was scared or if his hands trembled as smoke and flames engulfed the hospital, chief surgeon Valentin Filatov said: ‘Of course we were scared. We are human.’
Hero staff of Blagoveschensk cardio centre had just cut open the patient's chest when a major fire began.

A medical team successfully completed heart surgery as fire brigades fought a blaze on the hospital roof, and rescuers evacuated patients and medical staff.

Sixty seven patients were taken to safety, and all but eight of the staff who were at the operation theatre were ordered to leave.

hospital fire

The operation theatre was on the first floor of the two-storey hospital, built more than a century ago between 1905 and 1907. Pictures of the fire and of chief surgeon Valentin Filatov: Blagoveschensk emergency service, REN TV
'The patient needed coronary artery bypass graft surgery, one of the most complicated cardiac surgeries. We had to continue, there was no decision-making about it, it just had to go on.

'We completed it in full,' chief surgeon Valentin Filatov said.

Answering if he was scared or if his hands trembled as smoke and flames engulfed the hospital, Valentin Filatov responded: 'Of course we were scared. We are human.'

hospital fire
But his team showed 'composure and courage' because the surgery had to go on.

The operation theatre was on the first floor of the two-storey hospital, built more than a century ago between 1905 and 1907.

Faulty wiring caused the fire, the local emergencies service reported.

Thirty five firefighters and 11 units of fire extinguishing equipment were deployed to stop the blaze.

The centre serves the city and all of Amur region in the Far East of Russia.