Honduras: Blaze tears through prison killing around 300 inmates

UP to 300 prisoners have died after fire swept through a jail in Honduras, many burned trapped in their cells .

The head of the national prison system, Danilo Orellana, said the fire broke out at the jail in the town of Comayagua, 90 miles from the capital, Tegucigalpa. The prison held about 800 inmates and was destroyed by the blaze.

Comayagua fire department spokesman Josue Garcia said he saw “hellish” scenes while trying to put out the fire. He said “some 100 prisoners were burned to death or suffocated in their cells.”

Mr Garcia said many prisoners were trapped because the guard who had the key to their cells could not be found.

Officials are investigating the cause of the blaze. Two theories are that it was triggered by rioting prisoners or by an electrical short-circuit.