PATIENT who set hospital ward on fire by smoking in bed has been jailed
Lee Williams, 45, has been jailed for 5 years after setting a ward on fire by smoking a cigarette in bed while wearing an oxygen mask. Although repeatedly warned by staff that smoking was prohibited, Williams still lit up on Ward C5 of University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff last May. The fire that ensued almost cost him his life and thirty-eight patients had to be evacuated from two wards at the 1000-bed hospital.
The patient’s ‘act of gross stupidity’ did almost £50,000 damage and a doctor and two nurses received treatment for smoke inhalation and shock after the blaze.
Williams, of Treherbert, Rhondda, South Wales, was jailed for five years.
Judge David Wynn Morgan said:
‘You put at risk the life of the doctor who rushed to treat you, the two nurses who helped, the security staff who put out the fire, and the 38 patients who had to be evacuated in the thick smoke.’
‘The dangers of fire were made clear to you. Your response was: ‘I don’t care, it is my decision to have a cigarette’.
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