Ambulance blast caused by oxygen tank kills patient
'Dark day for health service' as probe launched
A pensioner was killed when an explosion caused an ambulance to catch fire outside a busy hospital emergency department.
Christopher Burn (79) died and paramedics Stephen Lloyd and Dave Finnegan were injured following the fatal fire at Naas General Hospital, Co Kildare yesterday.
It is believed that an oxygen tank caused the explosion, and the HSE has said that checks will be put in place immediately. A multi-agency investigation involving the Gardaí, the Health Safety Authority (HSA) and the HSE has also been launched after what HSE director general Tony O'Brien described as a "dark day for the health services".
Health Minister Simon Harris expressed his sympathies to Mr Burn's family last night.
"I was numb when I heard about this terrible tragedy," he said. "I visited the hospital to extend my sympathies to the family on the death of their loved one." Paramedic representatives last night called for an examination of the ambulance fleet.