PATIENTS had to be evacuated from Aintree hospital and the A&E department closed when a fire started in the roof of a building at the site.
Six fire engines from Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service attended at 4.34am on Wednesday, August 10 and were at the scene for a total of 12 hours.
On arrival crews found a plant building on the roof of the critical care department, and next to Accident & Emergency, was on fire.
Critical care and A&E’s main and back-up power supply was taken out by the fire.
Firefighters liaised with staff to evacuate patients from the areas near to the fire. About 50 people from the A&E department were moved outside, and 16 patients in critical care were taken to another part of the hospital. There were no reports of any casualties.
During the fire, the A&E Department was closed and people were advised to visit their next nearest A&E, or to consider using pharmacies, GPs, NHS 111, or Walk-in Centres. Outpatient appointments and planned surgery went ahead as usual.
The final fire crews left the scene at 3.48pm. An investigation into the cause of the fire has been carried out and determined the fire started accidentally.
The Emergency Department reopened on Wednesday evening.
Dr Jim Gardner, medical director at Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Aintree University Hospital, said: “I’m pleased to confirm that the A&E Department at Aintree University Hospital has fully reopened.
“I’d like to thank our teams at Aintree Hospital and colleagues from Merseyside Fire and Rescue and Merseyside Police, whose calm and professional response in the early hours of this morning ensured no patients were harmed and the fire was contained.
“I’d also like to express sincere thanks to colleagues at North West Ambulance Service and at neighbouring hospitals and healthcare facilities for their support while our A&E department was closed and patients diverted elsewhere.
“The impact has been felt across local health services and this will have presented additional challenges to already pressured organisations.
“I’d also like to acknowledge the support we have received from the people we serve - our local communities - which has been hugely valued by us all.”