A small fire led to the evacuation of a number of patients from the Accident and Emergency Department at Cork University Hospital (CUH) at lunchtime today.
Patients were evacuated from the impacted area for around an hour with ambulances being diverted to the Mercy University Hospital in the city.
Units of Cork City Fire Brigade received a call about the incident shortly after 1pm today.
However, the small fire had been put out by staff in the department by the time they arrived at the scene. Staff used a portable extinquisher which was onsite to put out the blaze.
Members of the two units of the fire brigade at the scene tested for gas and fully ventilated the area. They deemed it safe for patients and staff to return at around 2pm. The damage to the scene was minor in nature.
A spokesman for Cork City Fire Brigade praised the prompt action of staff at the ED for extinguishing the fire quickly. The spokesman said damage to the hospital was minor.
In a statement, a spokesman for CUH confirmed that an alarm was triggered at 1.10pm in the Emergency Department.
"As a result some patients were evacuated from the ED to a secure area. A number of ambulances were diverted to the Mercy University Hospital (MUH).
"Cork City Fire Brigade responded to the incident.
"The affected area of the department was re-opened and declared safe for patient care at 14.30."
The hospital spokesman thanked staff, the National Ambulance Service and Cork City Fire Brigade for their prompt response.