Seniors say they were abandoned at nursing home during Hurricane Irma
CLEARWATER, Fl. (NBC) —
Several residents at a senior community in Clearwater say the management and staff at their complex left them to fend for themselves during Hurricane Irma.
"It made me feel like we were deserted, period,” said 94-year-old resident Isadore Sterling We have 240 patients, people here."
Sterling said management and staff at his senior community complex, Hampton at Clearwater, abandoned residents during hurricane Irma, leaving them to fend for themselves.
He says a maintenance man and the activities director were the only ones who had heart to stay behind.
"You had to have your own food, we had water, but the electric was out,” said Sterling. “There was nothing we could do. We were stuck here."
Teresa Loftin's mother also lives here. She said the place looked like a homeless shelter when she arrived.
"We told them that they could evacuate, how can a 94 year old, how can my own mother, who is 88 years old, that doesn't drive -- how can they evacuate?” asked Loftin. “People were in oxygen in the lobby. I was about ready to knock the door down and start cooking for these people. It was bad."
Reporters attempted to get answers from management, asking one manager “Who's going to answer for these people that were left abandoned?”
The manager’s only response was “We're not assisted living.”
Loftin and Sterling said that's unacceptable.
"We could be robbed, we could be in trouble, we could be sick," said Sterling.
"Where was management? they were at home because they had a no evacuation zone,” said Loftin. “Well, your job is to be at this building, taking care of the elderly. You choose that job, you need to be here."