More than half of a large retirement community in Pembroke Pines is still without power following Hurricane Irma.
Many elderly citizens at Century Village are trapped in their apartments with no access to an elevator; some can’t plug in their oxygen machines, people have shared on social media.
Police confirmed Tuesday that about 60 percent of the 15,000-person community — mainly comprised of elderly retirees— still doesn’t have electricity and is under a boil water notice.
Residents were told it could be another five days before power is restored. On Tuesday, announcements were being made by a man with a bullhorn, one Twitter user posted. Century Village management did not return phone calls from the Miami Herald Tuesday.
“Officers have been on scene with the residents because some are considered vulnerable persons and we are concerned about their welfare,” said Pembroke Pines police spokeswoman Amanda Conwell.
After any natural disaster, power restoration is usually prioritized for police and fire stations, municipal buildings, hospitals and elderly facilities.
Because Century Village is not an elderly home, it is unclear whether it meets the priority requisites. Century Village is a community comprised of people 55 and over.
“Questions concerning power restoration — including priority areas — should be addressed to FPL,” Conwell said.
FPL did not immediately respond to phone calls from the Miami Herald Tuesday.
Many residents in wheelchairs were trapped in their homes upstairs since elevators were non-operational.
“Most of these people were raised in the Depression, they don’t listen to boil water notices, which is like drinking poison,” said Michael Rosenberg, whose 93-year-old father lives there. “Many are like 70 to 100 years old. How are they going to be without power for more than a week?”
Meanwhile, several organizations on Facebook are trying to rally volunteers to assist residents.
“Only a few hours ago, we became aware that over half of Century Village is still without power for more than 48 hours and that they are still under a boil-water notice,” posted Rabbi Aryeh-Etty Schwartz of Chabad of Southwest Broward. “This means that many of our own senior citizens are still unable to cook food or provide safe drinking water to keep themselves hydrated in today's intense heat!”