Power restored after fire at Life Hilton private hospital

2018-02-13 14:01
Hilton Life hospital general manager Nicholas Thorne points out the damaged electricity distribution board.

Hilton Life hospital general manager Nicholas Thorne points out the damaged electricity distribution board. (Ian Carbutt)

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Life Hilton Hospital is expecting to be fully operational again by the end of the week after a fire on Saturday.

The hospital’s main electricity distribution board caught alight in the early hours of Saturday morning, cutting off power to the facility. Seventeen patients from the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) were transferred to various Pietermaritzburg and Durban hospitals as a result of the “compromised electrical supply”.

Speaking to The Witness on Monday, Life Hilton private hospital general manager Nicholas Thorne said emergency and essential electricity had been restored before midnight on Saturday after the fire. Life Healthcare’s engineers have been working around the clock to replace the damaged distribution board.

Thorne said management had taken the decision not to admit any patients to the hospital until they were 100% satisfied that everything was in working order and had been tested.

Thorne said the incident had not impacted on patient care or compromised any patients’ well being.

The cause of the fire was still under investigation but the hospital wanted to “critically assess what transpired”. There was “a lot to be learnt” from the incident and it would serve as valuable insight for the group. He added that the replacement distribution board, which are usually manufactured over six weeks, had been manufactured for the hospital within three days and the engineers and staff had been “phenomenal”.

“It is remarkable what we have achieved and it is the team work that really stands out,” said Thorne. “ER24 was phenomenal when responding to our call to transfer patients. They had 10 ambulances out to assist us and Netcare and Midlands EMS also had ambulances on scene to help with transfers.” He added that the hospital was expected to be fully functional again by Wednesday.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  fire

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