Patients safely evacuated as fire destroys nursing home
POCATELLO, Idaho (AP) — A fire gutted a nursing home early Saturday in southeastern Idaho, but all the patients and staff made it to safety without serious injuries, officials say.
Safe Haven Health Care said in a statement that 49 residents were evacuated from the Pocatello facility, two more than emergency officials reported earlier.
Pocatello Fire Chief David Gates said the patients were transported to a hospital by ambulances and city buses and that at least five were treated for smoke inhalation. The cause of the fire was not yet known.
It comes a day after a massive fire tore through a Pennsylvania senior living community, injuring nearly 30 people and leaving a few of its more than 130 residents unaccounted for.
In Idaho, Safe Haven Health Care President Scott Burpee said the company is moving displaced patients to other facilities. The nursing home that burned has assisted living, nursing care and psychiatric care.
“We are working in partnership with surrounding communities and our other facilities to ensure ongoing care and housing for every one of our Pocatello residents,” Burpee said in the company statement.
Some patients have been sent to other Safe Haven facilities in Wendell and Bellevue.
Burpee said the building is a total loss but didn’t provide a damage estimate.
The fire chief said evacuating patients took extra time because many have health problems and limited mobility.
Gates also said strong winds blowing through the roof and getting water to the center of the flames made fighting the fire difficult. The Chubbuck Fire Department also responded to the blaze.