ELY- The staff in the middle of Carefree Living’s three buildings manually pulled the fire alarm just after 2 p.m. on Jan. 20, after observing what could have been smoke coming out of the …
ELY- The staff in the middle of Carefree Living’s three buildings manually pulled the fire alarm just after 2 p.m. on Jan. 20, after observing what could have been smoke coming out of the facility’s boiler room. At the same time, they evacuated all the building’s assisted living residents.
“They did everything right,” said Dave Marshall, the chief of Ely’s fire department, complimenting the Carefree Living staff on how they calmly and efficiently evacuated everyone to predetermined gathering areas away from the building and made sure that everyone was accounted for. “There was no panic. Everyone was calm. The staff had a plan, they knew what to do and they did it.”
The fire department determined that what was coming out of the boiler room wasn’t smoke. “It was steam,” Marshall stated at the scene. “The boiler overheated.”
After inspecting the malfunctioning boiler system, a boiler repair technician dispatched by Starkman Oil remarked, “oh yeah, there’s a part that’s busted.”
Carefree Living has three buildings at 140 S. 2nd Ave. next door to the Ely Bloomenson Community Hospital and the Boundary Waters Care Center. The facility provides both memory care and assisted living services. The facility is owned and managed by Spectrum Health Companies, a Minnesota-based business specializing in a variety of senior care services.