"This is a tragic event, the senseless loss of these eight individuals' lives", Hollywood Police Chief Tomas Sanchez said on "CBS This Morning" Thursday. Police opened a criminal investigation Wednesday into the deaths. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has ordered an "immediate moratorium" to prevent it from receiving any patients; officials are also checking on other assisted-care facilities and evacuating them if they've lost power.
The shocking news that eight people who were residents of the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills in Hollywood, Fla., died at the facility in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma has sparked many questions about how such a thing could happen.
Florida Power & Light said it had provided power to some parts of the Hollywood nursing home but that the facility was not on a county top tier list for emergency power restoration.
Hollywood spokeswoman Raelin Storey said one patient died on Tuesday and the body was taken away by a funeral home.
Hurricane Irma's furious march through Florida not only darkened millions of homes, it also flooded roads and piled them with debris, blocking off access to neighborhoods.
"We've never had that many outages, and I don't think any utility in the country ever has", FPL Chief Executive Eric Silagy said at a news conference on Monday.
SIX elderly nursing home residents have died in hurricane-hit Miami after their building was left without air conditioning, authorities said.
Police were first called to the facility at about 4:30 a.m. but did not arrive until after 6 a.m., officials said.
He added that the patients who have been admitted to the hospital are mostly being treated for "respiratory distress, dehydration and heat-related issues". He said the building has been sealed off for the criminal investigation but did not give further details. A deputy at the checkpoint said they were trying to keep people safe. Jon says that "apparently, the facility lost some, but not all of its power after Hurricane Irma". Fifty-seven residents were moved from a suburban Fort Lauderdale assisted-living facility without power to two nearby homes where power had been restored.
Another seven people died in Monroe County, which includes the Keys, officials said on Wednesday.
Police were helping to evacuate about 80 residents from the the Krystal Bay Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in North Miami Beach on Wednesday afternoon. But he said that a transformer powering the site's air conditioning "went down" and that management immediately contacted Florida Power & Light, the local electric utility, along with local emergency officials.
An estimated 150 facilities out of the almost 700 in the state are now without full power services, the association said. For example, the website said 25.9 percent of "short stay" residents were hospitalized again after admission to the nursing home, above the state average of 23 percent and the national average of 21.1 percent.
Dr Randy Katz, medical director of the emergency department at Memorial Regional Hospital, said the hospital began receiving patients early on Wednesday. About 110,000 people remained in shelters across the state.
Medicare records show that the nursing home, owned by Larkin Health Systems Inc., was fined $5,500 in February 2016 for unspecified violations.
"We need to make sure we're doing everything we can to keep our seniors safe during this hard time", he said.