Three preschool kids suffer severe burns during fire drill

By Thanh Hang   August 10, 2019 | 06:04 am PT
Three preschool kids suffer severe burns during fire drill
Nguyen Ngoc Ha Le, 5, is treated with severe burns at the Vietnam National Institute of Burns in Hanoi, August 10, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Hang.
Three kindergarten students in the northern Ha Nam Province were hospitalized with serious burns suffered during a fire emergency drill on Friday.

Nguyen Anh Thu, 3, Nguyen Ngoc Ha Le, 5, and Pham Bui Gia Khanh, 4, are now in the isolation room at the Vietnam National Institute of Burns in Hanoi.

At 3 p.m. Friday, the three students and 11 other kids, three to five years old, were learning how to respond to a fire emergency at the private Tuoi Tho kindergarten run by Nguyen Thi Khoat, 29.

Khoat used an alcohol-soaked cloth, put it in a tray and burned it to illustrate to her students that they should run out and call for help from adults when a fire happens. But a strong wind blew in through the second-floor classroom’s open window and flung the cloth on the three children sitting nearby.

The teacher tried to use cloth to extinguish the flame, but it spread quickly.

Tran Quang Tuyen, director of Duy Tien District Education and Training Department in Ha Nam, said the children were taken first to the Ha Nam General Hospital, 15 kilometers from the school, but then transferred to the Vietnam National Institute of Burns, which was an hour away, because the injuries were too severe.

Le had burns on 52 percent of her body. Some burned parts on her body and right arm will not heal naturally and she would need skin implants later, doctors said.

Thu had burns over half of her body, including the face, chest, arms and lower limbs.

Khanh suffered 37 percent burns, mostly in his face, chest and lower limbs.

Khanh has gained consciousness, but Le and Thu were still supported with ventilators on Saturday.

Tuyen said the Tuoi Tho private kindergarten had opened three months ago with four teachers and 20 students.

Khoat could open such a facility since she holds a diploma in early childhood education and a certificate in educational management, he said.

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