Five members of the Gawai family had a narrow escape even as the fire charred everything else in their flat.
I woke up when the fan stopped working. I realised that there was no electricity and went to open the door for ventilation. But the whole passage was filled with smoke, said 37-year-old Rekha Gawai.
Since Rekha could not locate her cellphone in the dark,she screamed for help for over half-an-hour. Rekha,her husband Subhash (46) and their three sons Siddhant (22),Nirvan (20) and Pratap (18),stood close to the kitchen window to prevent themselves from choking.
We kept screaming for help. After half-an-hour,fire personnel doused the fire on our floor and rescued us, she said. By the time they were rescued,their flat was filled with fumes.
The five were rushed to Sion hospital. While Subhash and Siddhant are critical,the other three had difficulty in breathing.
Dr Avinash Supe,Dean of Sion hospital,said,The survivors had low oxygen levels and high carbon-di-oxide and haemoglobin levels. Although there were no external burns,they had inhaled fumes which led to suffocation.
The five are in the medical intensive care unit. A relative,Yuvraj Gawai,said,I visited their flat. The fire has destroyed everything.
However,Rekha said the charred flat is not a reason of concern now. We will see where to go after we are discharged. Right now,I pray to God that my family members recover soon, she said.