BEIJING – A fire ripped through a nursing home in China’s central province of Henan Monday night, killing at least 38 people and injuring another six, two seriously.
The fire broke out at the Kangleyuan home in Pingdingshan City, Lushan County, around 8 p.m. local time ( 8 a.m. ET) on Monday. Local firefighters from the Lushan County Fire Department told NBC News that their teams were still in the field and still tabulating the number of dead and rescued. But the Henan provincial government said early Tuesday that 38 people had been killed in the fire, and six had been rescued.
The six were taken to the Lushan People's hospital for treatment. Calls to doctors from the Lushan People’s Hospital, treating the injured went unanswered.
Chinese President Xi Jinping called for first responders to do everything they can to rescue those injured in the nursing home fire, state-run broadcaster CCTV reported. Xi also urged a thorough investigation into the fire.
The cause of the blaze was being investigated by local officials, butstate media quoted a witness who claimed the fire was due to a circuitry problem inside the home.
Calls to Kangleyuan nursing home representatives went unanswered Tuesday. Local reports suggested the home took care of more than 100 seniors, some of whom were disabled.
— NBC News' Julia Zhou contributed to this report.