Inside an Assisted Living Facility That Lost Power After Irma

Last week, the entire nation watched in horror as eight residents at a skilled nursing facility in Hollywood, Florida, died after the building went without air conditioning for several hours.

Unfortunately, many other senior care communities in Florida were dealt a similar hand—though many were able to successfully overcome the situation.

A recent video from The Washington Post provides a glimpse into a different assisted living community in South Florida that had, at the time of filming, been without power for more than 30 hours due to Hurricane Irma.


The Cape Coral Shores Assisted Living Facility in Cape Coral, Florida, lost power at 8 a.m. local time on Sunday, Sept. 10. The community is presently home to 20 memory care residents, some of whom are also hospice patients.

Cape Coral Shores staff made the decision not to evacuate its residents prior to Irma due to their frailty and the amount of time it would take to transport them all to Orlando, Dan Nelson, the facility’s chief operations officer, told the Post. 

The video shows Cape Coral Shores staff feeding residents by lantern light and young visiting children entertaining residents.


The electricity ultimately came back on at the community on Tuesday, September 12, at 3 p.m., Cape Coral Shores told Senior Housing News. That means the building was without power for about 55 hours.

Luckily, all Cape Coral Shores residents remained healthy throughout the ordeal.

Not all senior care facilities have fared this well, however. Approximately 50 of the 683 skilled nursing facilities in Florida did not have commercial power services restored as of the morning of Friday, September 15, according to the Florida Health Care Association (FHCA).

Watch the video below:

Written by Mary Kate Nelson

Companies featured in this article: