Lakeridge Health Port Perry remains closed after rooftop fire
Lakeridge Health Port Perry remains closed after rooftop fire
August 29, 2017
Port Perrty Star
Article by: Moya Dillon
 

Damages estimated at $10 million

 
 
Hospital Fire

PORT PERRY -- A fire on the roof of the Port Perry hospital forced the evacuation of patients to other hospitals on Aug. 25. According to Durham Regional Police, the fire started about 7:15 p.m. and was under control about 8 p.m. Patients were evacuated when smoke began to fill the building. August 25, 2017 - Colin Williamson

PORT PERRY — The Port Perry Hospital remains closed following a rooftop fire that forced an evacuation and caused millions in damage.
 
One person suffered minor injuries in the fire, which was caused by roofing work and started just before 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 25.
 
“The origin and cause was determined to be a hot tar roofing application process that ignited nearby insulation,” said Township of Scugog fire Chief Mark Berney. “The estimated dollar loss is approximately $10 million.”

Altogether five trucks and 20 firefighters responded, with aid provided by the Oshawa and Uxbridge Fire Departments. The fire was brought under control within 35 minutes, with the scene fully secured by 8:45 p.m.
 
Berney had high praise for hospital officials and staff of the various agencies that assisted with the evacuation of all 22 patients from the hospital to Lakeridge sites in Oshawa and Bowmanville, including Durham Region EMS, Durham Regional Police and Durham Region Transit.
 
“I was very impressed with the actions of the hospital staff, it was quite obvious they had practised their emergency plan and they did it very well,” he explained, noting the fire posed a unique set of challenges for staff and firefighters.
 
“There’s a lot of potential unknowns in terms of how many beds are occupied, what the mobility of patients is as well as the different types of gases used for procedures,” he explained.
 
“There’s no telltale as to how many people are in the hospital at any one time so in cases like that it really comes down to whether or not locations like hospitals not only have, but have practised, emergency plans.”
 
He also praised the community for coming together to help during the crisis.
 
“There were a lot of people there, and a lot of people not in uniform,” he said.
 
“Bystanders and family members of patients played a significant role in caring for patients until they could be properly relocated by EMS.”
 
The hospital remains temporarily closed while damages are assessed and teams work to determine what will be required to safely reopen the hospital.
 
“We want to reassure patients and families that while the Port Perry Hospital remains temporarily closed, we are able to provide safe, quality care within our regional system,” says Matthew Anderson, Lakeridge Health president and CEO.
 
“Port Perry Hospital remains critical to access and delivery of care for the community. Lakeridge Health is committed to restoring and reopening the hospital as soon as possible. During the time of closure, we will extend capacity at other acute care hospitals within our network to help alleviate patient volumes.”
 
The majority of surgical and diagnostic procedures are being shifted to Lakeridge Health’s Oshawa and Bowmanville sites, while additional capacity at Ajax-Pickering Hospital may also be used if needed. Expectant moms planning to deliver at the New Life Centre are asked to discuss their birth plans with their medical professional, while all hospital-based care and deliveries will be provided at the Oshawa Hospital.
 
“The response from our staff, partners and local emergency services has been extremely positive and we would like to thank them for quickly delivering care and for supporting higher than normal volumes at this time,” adds Anderson.
 
A new information line is being set up to help patients, families and health service providers better understand when cancelled or postponed appointments will be rebooked.
 
For more information or updates on the information line visit www.lakeridgehealth.on.ca.