Fire hits building at Indian producer of COVID-19 vaccines – The Associated Press

PUNE, India (AP)– At least 5 individuals were eliminated in a fire that broke out Thursday at a structure under building at Serum Institute of India, the worlds largest vaccine producer, officials stated. The company stated the blaze would not impact production of the COVID-19 vaccine.Murlidhar Mohol, mayor of Pune city in southern Maharashtra state, said five bodies were found in the rubble after the flames were snuffed out by firefighters.Mahol stated the victims were probably building and construction workers. Serum Institue of Indias CEO, Adar Poonwala, stated he was “deeply saddened” by the loss of life.He stated there would be no reduction in vaccine production due to the fact that the company has other offered facilities.The business stated the fire was restricted to a brand-new facility it is constructing to increase the production of COVID-19 vaccines and guarantee it is better prepared for future pandemics.It said the fire did not affect existing centers making COVID-19 vaccines or a stockpile of around 50 million doses.Images showed huge plumes of smoke rippling from the structure and dozens of company workers in lab suits leaving the compound as firefighters worked to extinguish the blaze.Serum Institute of India is the worlds largest maker of vaccines and has actually been contracted to make a billion doses of the AstraZeneca/Oxford University vaccine.Poonawalla stated in an interview with The Associated Press last month that it hopes to increase production capacity from 1.5 billion dosages to 2.5 billion doses per year by the end of 2021.

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