State media: 13 killed in central China school dormitory fire

The Yingcai School in Henan Province, China, is shown on Saturday after a fire in its dormitory killed 13 people and injured another, according to official media. An investigation into the cause of the fire has been launched by local authorities. Photo by Xinhua/EPA-EFE

Jan. 20 (UPI) -- Thirteen people were killed and another was injured when a fire struck a school dormitory in China's north-central Henan Province, official media reported Saturday.

The fire at Yingcai School in Nanyang City of Henan's Fangcheng County broke out at 11 p.m. local time on Friday, fire officials told the state-run Xinhua News Agency.

The Fangcheng 119 Command Center responded to the alarm, organizing rescue forces to arrive at the scene quickly, and succeeded in putting out the fire within 38 minutes, the report said.

The injured person was hospitalized and is listed in stable condition.

Leaders from Henan Province and Nanyang City, located about 600 miles southwest of Beijing, set up a command headquarters outside the school in the aftermath of the blaze and quickly launched an investigation, according to Xinhua.

They said the person in charge of the school has been placed under police custody.

Chinese media reported the school is a private institution serving kindergarten and primary grade students. One local resident said its students are sometimes away during the weekend but this week were present in the building.