Skooter reporting 05/06/12
A drug rehab center in the Peruvian capital Lima caught fire and left 14 people dead, the second such incident this year. The fire broke out at the Sacred Heart ofcenter in Chosica in eastern Lima in the early morning.
Patients inside the rehab center could not escape due to doors were locked and the windows have iron grills, firefighters said.
In January, at another drug and alcohol clinic in Lima, a fire broke out and killed 29 people who were also trapped inside because the doors were locked. Firefighters had to use tools to break into the two-story building, fire chief Fernando Campos said.
"The doors were locked and the windows on the second floor had bars on them. It wasn't possible for people to get out," he said. However, there was one person who was able to escape despite suffering burns.
The cause of the fire has not yet been determined. The fire at the unlicensed Christ is Love clinic last January where 29 people died, encouraged calls for better regulation of rehabilitation centers. The rehab centers are often run by church groups, unlicensed clinics have been put up to make up for a shortage of legal facilities to help hundred of thousand addicts in need of treatment across Peru. In these unlicensed clinics patients are locked inside to prevent them from leaving after they are being brought by relatives to be treated for their addictions.
Peru's Health Ministry has been working on new regulations for rehabilitation clinics.