Fire swept through a school dormitory near the Indian Ocean port of Mombasa on Thursday, killing 25 schoolgirls and injuring 29, police said.

Some girls trying to escape through two narrow doors were crushed in the stampede. Others died when the wooden roof collapsed."Most of the victims died from the physical burns of fire," said Albert Waweru, Mombasa deputy police chief. "It's a big tragedy that has fallen on us."

At dawn, rescuers scooped the charred bones of the 15- and 16-year-olds into plastic bags. Weeping parents gathered outside the dormitory.

Authorities were trying to determine the cause of the fire at the Bombululu Secondary School near Mazeras, about 10 miles northwest of Mombasa. An electrical fault was suspected.

"We'll know when we interview the students. Most of the girls are in the state of shock and unable to talk," Waweru said.