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About 100 residents of Brookline assisted living center being transfered to Boston

Posted by Your Town  May 4, 2010 02:57 PM

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Staff help residents of the Goddard House in Brookline on board a bus. The residents are being sent to Boston after a small fire in a resident's room today. (Jason Woods / For the Globe)

BROOKLINE -- About a 100 residents of an assisted living facility are being transferred this afternoon to Boston after firefighters had to extinguish a small fire in a resident's room on the second floor, according to officials.

The evacuation is underway this afternoon. An MBTA bus is parked in front of the Goddard House on Chestnut Street, taking some of the ambulatory residents on board with the assistance of staff.

About eight ambulances are currently on site and some residents were seen being carried on stretchers into the vehicles.According to officials, the residents are being moved to Goddard Nursing Home on South Huntington avenue in Boston.

"We’ve essentially been given a conditional all clear to return to the facility,'' said Christine Bassett, president of the management company operating Goddard House. "We need to clean up some of the water damage and make sure the two resident rooms that were affected, each across from each other, are clear.''

She said the patients will be in Boston for a few hours. "We will feed them dinner there and the cleanup will be done here and we’ll bring them back tonight.''

Brookline Fire Chief Peter Skerry told reporters the department responded around 1:15 p.m. today. "There was smoke and fire upon our arrival,'' he said. "The fire was quickly knocked out.''

Skerry said the department struck a second alarm because they wanted enough manpower on the scene to deal with evacuations. About 150 elderly live in the building, 40 of whom are Alzheimer's patients, he said.

"They’ve since been relocated to area nursing homes and the hope is the majority of them will be back in their own beds tonight,'' Skerry said.

No injuries were reported as a result of the fire. The cause remains under investigation, but may have started on a cooktop in one of the resident's units. A second unit sustained heavy water damage, officials said.

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