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Florida is keeping an eye on nursing homes’ generators after Hurricane Irma fatalities

Posted: 9:25 AM, Aug 30, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-30 09:25:52-04

Hurricane Dorian is now forecast to be a Category 4 storm — with sustained winds of around 130 mph — when it makes its expected landfall in the US on Monday, likely somewhere along Florida’s Atlantic coast, the National Hurricane Center says.

Florida has launched a website to monitor generators in nursing homes and long-term care facilities as  Hurricane Dorian gets closer.

The state demanded safety improvements a fter 12 people died when Hurricane Irma  knocked out power at a nursing home in 2017. After the deaths, then-Gov. Rick Scott set new emergency requirements that mandate nursing homes and assisted-living facilities have a generator and adequate fuel to maintain a comfortable temperature for at least 96 hours after a power outage.

The facilities must  have an emergency power plan  to make sure air conditioners keep temperatures under 81 degrees.

“I think that sends a very important message that if you are entrusted of care with these vulnerable population, it’s really your responsibility to have a plan in case for what is going to happen,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said.

All 67 counties  in Florida are under a state of emergency as the state prepares for what may be the strongest hurricane to hit its east coast in nearly three decades.

At 105 mph,  Dorian is the strongest storm of the Atlantic hurricane  season so far. If it makes landfall as a Category 4 storm Monday as forecast, with sustained winds of around 130 mph, it will be the strongest hurricane to strike Florida’s East Coast since Andrew in 1992, according to CNN Meteorologist Brandon Miller.

By early Friday, Dorian was a Category 2 storm.