More than 82 people have died and 110 others injured after a fire broke out at a hospital in Baghdad, the capital city of Iraq.

The fire at the Ibn Khatib hospital in the Diyala Bridge area that had been equipped to house COVID-19 patients, was sparked by an oxygen tank explosion, according to the Ministry of Interior.

 “We urgently need to review safety measures at all hospitals to prevent such a painful incident from happening in future,” Interior Ministry spokesman Khalid al-Muhanna said on state television.

Fire tears through Baghdad COVID hospital | Middle East News | Al Jazeera
The fire at the Ibn Khatib hospital in Baghdad was sparked by an oxygen tank explosion, the Ministry of Interior of Interior said. PHOTO/COURTESY

Families scrambled to rescue their loved ones from the inferno with one man describing how horrifying the whole experience was.

“I found a girl suffocating, about 19 years old, she was suffocating, she was about to die. I took her on my shoulders and I ran down. People were jumping… Doctors fell on the cars. Everyone was jumping,” one Ahmed Zaki is quoted by Reuters.

 Patients have been moved to other hospitals, with several families still at the ill-fated hospital searching for their loved ones after failing to locate them in other hospitals.

Fire from oxygen tank blast in Baghdad COVID-19 hospital kills 82 | Reuters
Several families still at the ill-fated hospital searching for their loved ones after failing to locate them elsewhere. PHOTO/COURTESY

Cases of fires are common in the Middle East county with Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi ordering an investigation into Sunday’s.

At least 90 people died in 2019 after an overloaded ferry sank in the Tigris river carrying families on an outing.

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