A large response of fire companies turned out late Sunday night for a reported fire at Brighten at Julia Ribaudo, a skilled nursing facility in Lake Ari
A large response of fire companies turned out late Sunday night for a reported fire at Brighten at Julia Ribaudo, a skilled nursing facility in Lake Ariel.
No one was injured, and the damage was limited to a ceiling fan motor which had begun to send out smoke.
There are 115 residents boarding at Julia Ribaudo’s, said Bob Purdy, Administrator. As a precaution, the residents were taken to a dining room, which is a pre-planned evacuation zone. If necessary, there were 15 ambulances lined up outside ready to start taking residents to another location.
The smoke set off an inside alarm, and staff immediately alerted 9-1-1. The call came in at about 10:30 p.m. Lake Ariel Fire Department Chief Lee Glassman said that everything worked according to their intensive planning and protocol. A large contingent of neighboring fire companies were dispatched immediately.
On the way to the facility, Glassman was notified that staff called and reported smoke was seen coming from multiple places in the ceiling. Consequently, Glassman called for a second alarm, and more fire companies were on their way.
“It would be easier to tell you what fire companies were not there,” said Glassman, in an interview the next day. There were units from Lackawanna County as well.
It took about a half hour to locate the source of the smoke. At around 11 p.m., many of the fire companies were being released, with the Chief’s thanks. He said there was a strong odor of either burned ballast or insulation in the C-wing. Each wing vents separately, Glassman said, and they only needed to open the exit door to the affected wing to air out the area.
All of the residents were able to return to their rooms that evening. Everyone was all right, said Glassman, though some had “mild anxiety” over the experience. Lake Ariel fire Department was on scene till about 11:45 p.m.
They had called for Honesdale Fire Department’s ladder truck, being the largest in the area. Although it wasn’t needed after all, Glassman said that Honesdale Fire Department fixed the lanyard on the flagpole while they were. The Chief had asked Honesdale Fire Department to help with this and didn’t have a chance to get down during the day.
Chief Glassman said that Lake Ariel Fire Department works closely with the nursing facility’s management, and conducts drills there twice a year. Brighten at Julia Ribaudo has their own fire drills each month. The Administrator said that he holds the “highest regard” for the fire companies and noted that everything went according to plan. Purdy said that he was very pleased with the response from staff. They will have to replace the fan motor, Purdy said.
Brighten at Julia Ribaudo is a 120 bed facility, at 1404 Golf Park Drive, just off Route 191. Brighten Health Group has been the facility’s owner since July of 2004.