Death toll at Florida nursing home now at eight
by Kiley Crossland
Posted 9/13/17, 03:54 pm
UPDATE: The number of deaths at a Florida nursing home rose to eight on Wednesday afternoon. Emergency workers found three residents dead when they arrived at The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills early Wednesday morning, but another five have since died at the hospital or on the way. Hurricane Irma knocked out a transformer that powered the center’s air conditioner. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has called for an investigation into the “unfathomable” situation. “I am demanding answers,” he tweeted.
OUR EARLIER REPORT (9/13/17, 11:38 a.m.): Police and fire crews on Wednesday morning evacuated a Hollywood, Fla., nursing home after five residents were reported dead. The facility lost power due to Hurricane Irma. Hollywood Police Chief Tom Sanchez said a criminal investigation has been launched into the deaths, which investigators believe were heat-related. Irma’s death toll—both from the storm and after-storm accidents and hazards—continues to rise. Five people died from breathing carbon monoxide fumes from generators in the Orlando, Miami, and Daytona Beach areas. A Tampa man died while using a chainsaw to clean up after the storm. The death count in Florida is at least 13, with another four deaths in South Carolina, two deaths in Georgia, and at least 37 people killed in the Caribbean. Search-and-rescue teams are still making their way down into the southern parts of the Florida Keys, the hardest hit area in the state. Nearly 9.5 million people are still without electricity. Utility officials said it could take 10 days for power to be fully restored.
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Kiley is a former WORLD correspondent.