LIMA – A fire at a rehabilitation center for drug addicts outside the Peruvian capital Saturday took the lives of 14 patients, firefighters told local media.
“We’ve counted 14 bodies, most of them in the rooms and corridors on the second floor. It’s possible they tried to escape but the doors and windows were locked,” fire chief Fernando Campos said on Radio Programas del Peru.
The rehab center is located in Cosica, about 30 kilometers (19 miles) east of Lima, and according to the town’s mayor, Luis Bueno, it had valid operating permits.
The blaze broke out before dawn, apparently after a fight among patients, some neighbors said on canal ATV+.
A check made by firefighters after extinguishing the flames indicated that four people managed to get out of the burning building alive.
In late January, a fire at another rehab center for drug addicts and alcoholics outside Lima caused the death of 29 patients.