5 dead at Florida nursing home without AC after Irma, others evacuated

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Eight people have died after a nursing home in Hollywood, Florida, was evacuated Wednesday morning, days after it lost power as Hurricane Irma swept through the region, according to multiple reports.

Three elderly residents were found dead on Wednesday inside a nursing home in Hollywood, Florida, north of Miami.

Including the nursing home deaths, at least 25 people in Florida have died under Irma-related circumstances, and six more in SC and Georgia, many of them well after the storm had passed.

The death toll from Irma stood at 81, with several hard-hit Caribbean islands accounting for more than half the fatalities, and officials continued to assess damage inflicted by the second major hurricane to strike the USA mainland this year.

Some 4.3 million homes and businesses were still without power on Wednesday in Florida and neighboring states, down from 7.4 million customers on Monday.

Gould said the incident at Hollywood Hills emphasizes that all facilities need to have backup plans in case power is lost during storms.

Efforts to prevent such disasters in nursing facilities have improved in recent years, public health experts said, and that new federal regulations require facilities to have sufficient backup power to maintain reasonable temperatures.

Florida has more than 680 nursing homes that house about 73,000 residents, the Florida Health Care Association said.

Four more patients died at or en route to hospital and a fifth was later identified as having died the night before, officials said.

The storm left millions without power across Florida. An official from Memorial said that the healthcare network was helping with evacuating people from the rehabilitation center, which is not part of the Memorial system, and will take some to their other hospitals in the region.

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"This situation is unfathomable", he said.

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

Hollywood police chief Tom Sanchez, "They've evacuated two buildings".

While sheltering in place can be preferable at times, she said, doing so requires planning to survive the aftermath.

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.

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

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.

Broward County officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Carbon monoxide from a generator is also suspected in the death of a man in Miami, while authorities say another dozen people were treated for carbon monoxide-related illnesses on Tuesday in Polk and Brevard counties. Authorities had feared a much slower detour route might be necessary if the Santa Fe River flooded the interstate near Gainesville.

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