By AARON KATERSKY, ABC News
(NEW YORK) — Fire burned through a Spring Valley, New York, assisted living facility Tuesday, killing one resident and prompting dozens of middle-of-the-night rescues.
Flames broke out inside the Evergreen Court For Adults on Lafayette Street just after 1 a.m. Tuesday morning.
Between 20 and 25 residents were rescued by firefighters in what they described as a “chaotic scene.”
One resident was pronounced dead at a local hospital.
A portion of the building collapsed as firefighters battled the blaze. One firefighter was briefly trapped in the burning structure.
Two firefighters were injured. One was admitted to Westchester Medical Center and another was treated at Hackensack University Medical Center and released.
One of the firefighters appears to have suffered a medical condition, possibly a heart attack, official said. Another is unaccounted for, officials said.
Many displaced residents were taken in buses to nearby facilities, where they are being cared for.
Officials are now attempting to account for all the residents, although they “believe most are accounted for,” Rockland County Fire Coordinator Christopher Kear said.
“We believe they are, but again we are double checking, we are triple checking, to make sure,” Kear said.
The fire is still not under control six hours later. Firefighters are still battling “a ton of hot spots” and have been struggling with water supply problems.
The building is a total loss.
Once the fire is out, K9 and other specialized units will search the fire debris for any possible victims.
The facility offers assisted living, nursing home facilities and continuing care for older adults.
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