Dead at Florida Nursing Home that Lost Power During Hurricane

Residents are evacuated from the powerless Hollywood Hills Nursing Home 1200 N 35th Ave. on Wednesday morning

Five Hollywood nursing home residents died Wednesday morning after they fell ill in a building left without air conditioning after Irma blasted South Florida, according to authorities at the scene.

An initial news release from the city of Hollywood said that three patients were found dead in the facility early Wednesday, while others were taken to the hospital and pronounced dead there.

While the causes of their deaths were not immediately clear, the entire facility was evacuated due to the cooling issues.

He added that the patients who have been admitted to the hospital are mostly being treated for "respiratory distress, dehydration and heat-related issues".

A state official eventually said they found a generator and gas, but it was not needed: The power turned back on.

The nursing home did have a generator, but it is unclear if the generator was functional, WSVN reported.

A search warrant has been granted for a Florida nursing home where eight patients died days after Hurricane Irma.

It gave The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills, a for-profit facility with 152 beds, an overall rating of "below average".

Later Wednesday, officials in North Miami Beach evacuated 84 patients at Krystal Bay Nursing & Rehabilitation Center after one of the generators there failed. The state's regulations say that during the first three days after a widespread disaster, nursing homes must provide essential medications and oxygen for those who need them, enough food and water for residents and for the staff required to care for them and supplies needed to maintain hygiene in the premises.

Ten million people are still without power in Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas after Hurricane Irma. More than half the community of 15,000 residents lacked power.

"We're conducting a criminal investigation inside", Hollywood Police Chief Tom Sanchez said.

Police said a criminal investigation is underway and they are not ruling anything out.

Fire rescue teams evacuated 122 people Wednesday night from two assisted living facilities near Orlando after the Orange County fire chief ordered firefighters to assess conditions of all elderly communities in the area.

The Broward Medical Examiner's Office confirmed Wednesday that Bobby Owens, 84; Manuel Mario Medieta, 96; Miguel Antonio Franco, 92; Estella Hendricks, 71; Gail Nova, 71; Carolyn Eatherly, 78; Betty Hibbard, 84; and Albertina Vega, 99, had died, the Sun Sentinel reported.

The incident prompted police to check on the 42 other nursing homes in Hollywood, which is located on Florida's Atlantic coast less than 20 miles north of Miami.

Meanwhile, U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., said he is asking the secretary of health and human services to look into what happened.

Around the state, hazards were popping up in the aftermath of the storm. "Our hearts go out to the families", she said. More than 21,000 people remain in shelters across the state.

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