Major fire breaks out at India’s Serum Institute manufacturing Covid vaccines, 5 dead
A major fire broke out at India’s Serum Institute, the world’s largest maker of vaccines but luckily the production of Covid vaccines remains unaffected, officials said.
According to media reports, fire broke out at the six-storeyed Covid vaccine manufacturing facility in Pune in the afternoon after which 10 fire tenders were pressed into service to rescue the workers stuck inside and douse the blaze.
Adar Poonawalla, owner and chief executive officer of the Serum Institute of India (SII), said fire had not claimed any life and the vaccine manufacturing unit was also safe.
Thank you everyone for your concern and prayers. So far the most important thing is that there have been no lives lost or major injuries due to the fire, despite a few floors being destroyed.
— Adar Poonawalla (@adarpoonawalla) January 21, 2021
A report in the Hindustan Times, however, said the fire has claimed five lives so far.
SII is producing millions of doses of Covishield vaccines which have been developed by the AstraZeneca and Oxford University.
Covishield along with Covaxin are being administered to healthcare workers in the first phase of the massive vaccination drive which began in India on January 16.