Source Pravda.Ru

Fire at Latvia's home for elderly burns 26 alive

A fire raced through a home for the elderly and disabled in western Latvia on Friday, killing 26 people, rescue officials said.

The blaze started after midnight in Kuldiga county, about 100 kilometers (60 miles) west of Riga, said the Latvian State Fire and Rescue Service. All the victims were residents of the home, the rescue service said.

Rescuers managed to evacuate several dozen people from the burning building before the roof collapsed, Baltic news agency BNS reported. Firefighters told BNS the blaze was under control, but sill smoldering Friday morning, the AP said.

A local official, Gunars Bloks, said the building was a historical mansion that had been converted into a retirement home, BNS reported.

It was not immediately clear how the fire started.