Students flee fire in Korat tutorial centre

Twenty-one people, mostly teenagers, are in the hospital after suffering from smoke inhalation after a fire broke out at a tutorial centre they attend in Muang district of Nakhon Ratchasima yesterday.

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A relieved survivor walks away with his mother from the scene of a fire that broke out in a building housing a tutorial centre in Muang district of Nakhon Ratchasima yesterday. PRASIT TANGPRASERT


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Students flee fire in Korat tutorial centre

About 150 people, mostly high school students who were attending tutorial classes in downtown Nahkon Ratchasima, had a frightening morning yesterday.

At about 10 am smoke engulfed the four-storey Kru Jaew centre in the commercial heart of the province.

A teacher at the centre, who requested anonymity, said she was teaching a maths class on the second floor when the room began to fill with smoke.

The students on the upper floors ran up to the top of the building and waved for help. Some of them passed out from inhaling smoke as they scrambled to leave the building.

Firefighters help evacuate students to safety. PRASIT TANGPRASERT

Firefighters erected a ladder to help students stranded on the upper floors. The fire took about 40 minutes to control.

27 students were admitted to two local hospitals to be treated for smoke inhalation. Six were discharged after their conditions improved.

It was unclear where the fire broke out. Police suspect it was caused by an electrical short circuit.

The building operator claimed to have heard a bang – which police think could have been an power transformer exploding – before the fire.

Padetsuek Chotiklang, deputy director of the Provincial Primary Education Zone 1 Office, said the tutorial centre has operated for 10 years without a permit.

Mr Padetsuek estimates that about 150 tutorial centres have opened in Education Zone 1, which covers Nakhon Ratchasima and its surrounding provinces.

A third of these are thought to be operating illegally.

Adapted from a story in today's Bangkok Post.

relieved – happy that something unpleasant has not happened or has ended โล่งใจ, เบาใจ, หมดกังวล, ผ่อนคลาย
survivor – someone who still exists after an event that could have killed or destroyed them ผู้รอดชีวิต
scene – site; a place where something happens or happened สถานที่เกิดเหตุ
tutorial centre – a place where students pay to get extra instruction, usually to prepare for examinations
flee – to leave a place or person quickly because you are afraid of possible danger หนี อพยพ
engulfed – covered or surrounded by something harmful, in this case, fire  ปกคลุม
storey – a level in a building ชั้นของตึกหรืออาคาร
commercial – for business purposes เกี่ยวกับการค้า
request – an act of asking for something in a formal or polite way การขอร้อง
anonymity – when someone's name is not given or known การไม่ระบุชื่อ
wave – to move your hand or arm from side to side in the air in order to attract attention โบกมือ
pass out – to become unconscious  หมดสติ
inhale – to breathe in หายใจเข้า, สูดลมหายใจ
scramble – to do something in a hurry รีบเร่ง
evacuate – to cause to leave a place because it is not safe เคลื่อนย้ายออกจาก
erect – to put the parts of something together so that it stands upright  ตั้งขึ้น
admit – to put someone into hospital for medical treatment เปิดรับ
local – in or related to the area that you live, or to the particular area that you are talking about  ท้องถิ่น
treat – to provide medical care รักษา
discharge – to allow someone officially to leave somewhere, especially a hospital or a court of law ได้รับอนุญาตให้ออกจาก
condition – the physical state of a person or animal, especially how healthy they are อาการ, สุขภาพ
improve – to get better  ดีขึ้น
suspect – to believe that something is true, especially something bad  สงสัย
short circuit – a failure in an electrical circuit, when electricity travels along the wrong route because of damaged wires or a fault in the connections between the wires วงจรลัด, ช็อต
operator – a person or company that runs a business ผู้ดำเนินกิจการทางธุรกิจ, ผู้ประกอบธุรกิจ
claim – to say that something is true อ้าง
transformer – a piece of equipment that changes the voltage of a flow of electricity หม้อแปลง
deputy – a person whose rank is immediately below that of the leader of an organisation รอง
operate – to carry out an activity like running a business ดำเนินการ
permit – an official document that gives you permission to do something ใบอนุญาต
estimate – an amount that you guess or calculate using the information available ประมาณการ
surrounding – all around a place  บริเวณรอบๆ
a third – a one-third; 1/3
illegally – in a way that is against the law อย่างผิดกฎหมาย

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Writer: Terry Fredrickson
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