8 die at nursing home

Erica Roy
September 17, 2017

Eight people at a Florida nursing home that was left without power for days after Hurricane Irma have died, BBC reports.

The deaths, which prompted a criminal investigation Wednesday, were what many feared might happen after Irma knocked out power for millions of people in Florida, a state known for its omnipresent heat.

The governor said he has ordered a probe by state authorities. Hollywood Public Affairs Director Raelin Story said there is no official cause of death yet, but a number were having respiratory issues.

Sanchez said that officials believe the situation at the nursing home "may be related to the loss of power" caused by Irma, but said they were not ruling anything out.

Utilities in the southeast US have restored power to almost half of the homes and businesses knocked out by Hurricane Irma, leaving 4.3M customers representing ~9M in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas without power as of midday today.

The center is a 152-bed, skilled nurse facility and is located across the street from the Memorial Regional Hospital, according to the center's website.

Three patients died at the nursing home, and three others died after being transported to local hospitals.

Such capacity is now being tested in Florida, home to among the highest concentrations of senior citizens in the United States with more than 1.6 million people ages 75 years or older, according to the 2015 U.S. Census. The Associated Press reported that before the deaths at the Hollywood nursing home, Irma was blamed for a combined 19 fatalities in Florida, Georgia and SC.

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Wilton Manors City Manager Leigh Ann Henderson told The Associated Press on Thursday that the Williamsburg Landing assisted living facility has been using generators to power portable air conditioner units in certain areas of the building.

In addition to severe flooding across Florida and extensive property damage in the Keys, residents faced widespread power outages that initially plunged more than half the state into darkness.

Trump was traveling to Naples and Fort Myers on Florida's southwestern coast to meet with those affected by the hurricane and learn more about relief efforts.

Calls to the owner and other officials at the Hollywood home were not immediately returned, but the facility's administrator, Jorge Carballo, said in a statement that it was "cooperating fully with relevant authorities to investigate the circumstances that led to this unfortunate and tragic outcome".

Sanchez, the police chief, said a criminal investigation had been launched.

The move is being done "to make the residents more comfortable", Henderson said.

"Our son was very uncomfortable - he couldn't sleep, he was sweating, and he was out of his routine", said Guillen, sitting in the lobby of the hotel with her family. Police are looking into why all residents weren't evacuated sooner.

Keefe said about one-third of Broward County was still without power. At least six people in Florida died of apparent carbon monoxide poisoning from generators.

Other reports by GlobalViralNews

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