Ten people killed as fire breaks out at Japanese hospital while patients are sleeping

Tragic: Fire crews pictured tackling a fire that broke out at an orthopaedic hospital in Japan.

Tragic: Fire crews pictured tackling a fire that broke out at an orthopaedic hospital in Japan.

A fire at a hospital in Southern Japan has  killed ten people and left eight others injured, reports The Mail Online.

The blaze broke out at an  orthopaedic hospital in the city of Fukuoka while patients were  asleep.

Officials said that eight of those who died  were patients and two were staff at the hospital.

Several of those who were hurt are said to be  in a serious condition.

Reports claim that witnesses  saw emergency crews attempting to revive several of the patients outside the  hospital.

Media reports say a total of 18 people were  at the hospital at the time of the fire, which has since been  extinguished.

Police said the fire started  from the first floor of the four-storey building, but the cause is still under  investigation.

Extensive damage: This picture shows the first floor of the hospital, much of which was destroyed in the fire

Extensive damage: This picture shows the first floor of the hospital, much of which was destroyed in the fire

Most of the building was destroyed in the  blaze.

Many of the patients admitted to the  hospital, which is in a queit residential area in the city, are said to be  elderly.

According to the Japan Daily  Press, one local resident, a 43-year old woman, said she heard cries of help at  the time of the incident.

The fire reportedly started at around 2.20am  and took fire crews around two and a half hours to put out.

There was no sign of an initial fire  extinguishing effort at the hospital and fireproof doors on the second and third  floors were not properly used, according to an unidentified fire department  official.