INDIANAPOLIS — The Indianapolis Fire Department battled a smoky fire at a senior living facility early Tuesday morning on the city’s east side. While 41 residents had to be evacuated, there were no reports of injuries or hospital transports due to the incident.
Rescue units and firefighters were called to CrownPointe Senior Living, a 72-room residential nursing facility in the 7300 block of E. 16th St., shortly after midnight. When firefighters arrived, there was heavy fire and smoke on the back side of the building, and evacuation of the residents was already underway by facility staff.
Video from the fire scene showed firefighters and staff working to provide blankets and sheets to keep the elderly evacuees warm as they stood and sat outside the building.
IndyGo buses were brought to the scene to provide shelter from the cold temperatures. Residents were eventually taken to other CrownPointe senior living facilities in Lebanon, Greenfield and Anderson.
IFD credited facility staff for its quick, effective evacuation response.
“What could have been a completely different scenario was well orchestrated by the staff here at the community center,” said IFD battalion chief Rita Reith.
A preliminary investigation indicates the fire may have started in the dining room and traveled quickly up to the building’s attic. The cause of the blaze is unclear. The building’s sprinkler system did activate.
In a written statement from CrownPointe Senior Living Communities, officials said:
“We are happy to report that everyone was safely removed from the building last night. Some residents were relocated to our sister facilities in Greenfield, Lebanon and Anderson, and others were sent to nearby facilities in Indianapolis. Restoration is already underway on the building, power has been restored, and we are working to have it secured today. Our residents have safe temporary homes right now, and will have a new home for them to return to soon.
We would like to thank the Indianapolis Fire Department and Captain Steve Rowland and the Lawrence Township Fire Department for the amazing job they did and their quick response in putting out the fire. We would also like to thank the facility next door, Wildwood Healthcare Center for all of their help. Thank you to all of our staff who worked tirelessly through the night to ensure the safety of all our residents including their pets. Thank you to the residents and their families for their patience and understanding as we navigated through the night and through this entire process. A special thank you to the Ombudsman Marcia Greene, the Health Facility Administrator Lori Weaver, our Head of Operations Nancy Morgan, and our Project Manager for Buildings and Grounds Skip Taylor for their quick arrival and calm response in getting everyone placed promptly. Everyone working together is what made this night end safely.”Larry New – Owner and Operator of CrownPointe Communities
A spokesperson for CrownPointe Senior Living Communities said inspections will be completed per insurance and/or state requirements.
“We do not have an expected timeline yet as of today for when residents can move back in. Restoration is underway but we do not have any timeline estimates today,” said the spokesperson.
The facility next door, Wildwood Healthcare Center, also assisted in the evacuation of residents by helping transport and care for the evacuated residents and their families. CrownPointe officials said those families were notified overnight and told where which facility their family members were temporarily moved to.
In a statement from Wildwood Healthcare Center, a spokesperson wrote:
“At Wildwood our employees sincerely work to fulfill their main job description: to reach out with their hearts and touch the hearts of others. That means cultivating caring environments, in our building and the community around us. Our hearts go out to the residents and employees at CrownPointe Senior Living and that we could be of support to them during this difficult time.”Jessica Pridonoff – Corporate Director of Communications