A FIRE which broke out at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital was caused by a discarded cigarette in a bathroom, firefighters believe.
NHS Lothian said that 18 patients had to be evacuated to a lower floor, as around 20 firefighters dealt with the blaze last night.
It is believed that the cigarette caused paper towels to catch fire in a bathroom in the Swanston Ward of the mental health hospital in Morningside.
Appliances from Tollcross and Liberton were dispatched to the scene at 8.24pm. Nurses had already evacuated the patients by the time crews arrived.
Although the fire was extinguished within half an hour, firefighters remained at the scene until 9.50pm.
Simon Mackenzie, associate medical director of NHS Lothian, described it as a small fire and said no-one had been injured.