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6 die at nursing home as Irma's aftermath brings new hazards

16 September, 2017, 00:57 | Author: Priscilla Morrison

Eight people have died after a Florida nursing home and long-term-care facility apparently lost air conditioning in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, and police have launched a criminal investigation into the incident.

"The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills has evacuated this morning due to a prolonged power failure to the transformer which powered the facility's air conditioning system as a result of the hurricane".

"She's been to the hospital many times since she's been at that nursing home", Mitchell continues.

Jon says that "apparently, the facility lost some, but not all of its power after Hurricane Irma".

One of the most powerful Atlantic storms on record, Irma bore down on the Caribbean with devastating force as it raked the northern shore of Cuba last week before barreling into the Florida Keys island chain on Sunday, packing sustained winds of up to 130 miles per hour (215 km per hour).

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She adds that utility providers have said they hope to have power restored for all of southeastern Florida by the weekend.

As of Tuesday evening, 114 of Florida's nursing homes were relying on generators for power.




Governor Rick Scott called the tragedy "unfathomable", and police said they had opened a criminal investigation, sealing off the building after the remaining patients were transferred to hospitals.

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.

The facility reported yesterday that its fans and spot coolers were in working order, and that it had power, according to the statement. The storm has presented risks and challenges for the elderly population in Florida, where about one in 5 residents are age 65 or older.

A kitchen worker at the center told the Miami Herald that the facility "had power from a generator to cook meals, but no air conditioning".

Later, Scott directed AHCA to issue an emergency moratorium for the facility, prohibiting it from admitting any patients until the order is lifted.

Total insured losses from the storm are expected to run about $25 billion, including $18 billion in the United States and $7 billion in the Caribbean, catastrophe modeler Karen Clark & Company estimated on Wednesday.

Could this be President Donald Trump's "Brownie" moment? Kirsch noted that hundreds of elderly people died in the 1995 Chicago heat wave and when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans in 2005.

"My house, my business, both my vehicles, everything is gone", said Benson, who was stopping in San Juan before continuing to Boston to seek refuge with his wife's brother. "We rode out that frightful storm in a shower that I had reinforced after Hurricane Marilyn", Benson added.

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