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Apartment fire kills 13, injures others in central Chinese city

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BEIJING — An early morning fire killed 13 people in an apartment building in central China on Thursday, state media said.

The fire erupted on the ground level of the seven-story building in Zhengzhou, the capital of Henan province, but did not spread far on a rainy night, China Central Television reported. It said the deaths occurred on the top floor, meaning the victims likely died from carbon monoxide poisoning.

PHOTO: In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, a man checks a charred ammeter box at a seven-story apartment building after a fire in Zhengzhou, capital of central China's Henan Province, Thursday, June 25, 2015. A fire erupted on the ground level of the building in the early morning but the cause of the fire was not known, state broadcaster CCTV said. (Zhu Xiang/Xinhua via AP) NO SALES
In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, a man checks a charred ammeter box at a seven-story apartment building after a fire in Zhengzhou, capital of central China's Henan Province, Thursday, June 25, 2015. A fire erupted on the ground level of the building in the early morning but the cause of the fire was not known, state broadcaster CCTV said. (Zhu Xiang/Xinhua via AP) NO SALES

Multiple people were hospitalized with burn injuries, the broadcaster said. The Zhengzhou No. 1 People's Hospital confirmed that four people were under urgent medical treatment for burns.

The TV network said the cause of the fire was not known.

Many apartments in China are not properly maintained, and haphazard remodeling projects can leave behind safety hazards such as improper wiring, bad ventilation and the removal of supporting struts.

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