ATF Releases Findings in 2017 Nursing Home Fire

The U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives recently closed their investigation into a 2017 nursing home fire located just 25 miles west of Philadelphia. Among their findings, the report provided that the main valve was shut off to the nursing home’s sprinkler system which is why the sprinklers did not go off during the fire. So far no explanation as to why the valve was shut off has been provided. Philadelphia nursing home abuse lawyer Eric H. Weitz knows that unfortunately, nursing home negligence and abuse are not uncommon in Philadelphia and across Pennsylvania and innocent nursing home residents are often injured as a result.

Injured nursing home residents

Close to 150 nursing home residents and staff members were evacuated from the residence in frigid temperatures as a result of the fire that overtook the nursing home. Approximately two dozen residents suffered injuries and four residents were killed in the fire. Other cases of injured nursing home residents in the Philadelphia area are frequently reported including the case of an elderly woman who was moved into a nursing home by her children after they decided it was no longer safe for her to live on her own. After living in the nursing home for one year, the resident was able to leave the nursing home without permission or a chaperone and wandered on the property for approximately 20 minutes before falling 15 feet over an unfenced ledge onto a sidewalk below. Her injuries were fatal.

Nursing home resident victims and their families

Nursing home residents are vulnerable because of their physical and mental limits due to age and disease. Families make the difficult decision to put loved ones in nursing homes for their health and safety. Learning that a loved one is being mistreated, abused, or not taken care of the way they should be is devastating for family members, especially when that mistreatment results in serious physical, financial, or emotional damage to nursing home residents.

Common types of nursing home mistreatment and negligence

Common types of nursing home mistreatment and negligence include the following:

  • Neglect of residents who suffer when their needs go unmet
  • Isolation of residents who are immobile and left alone for long periods of time
  • Verbal abuse
  • Physical abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Poor monitoring and security allowing for a resident to be abused by another resident or visitor
  • Residents forced to live in unhygienic conditions
  • Financial theft from patients
  • Poor medical care
  • Malnourishment


If you have learned or suspect that your loved one has been mistreated at their nursing home, contact Philadelphia nursing home abuse attorney Eric H. Weitz at The Weitz Firm, LLC to schedule a consultation. We represent nursing home resident victims and their family members to make sure that they receive the compensation that they deserve including pain and suffering and medical bills. In cases where residents have sustained fatal injuries, wrongful death recoveries may be available for close family members. Nursing home residents deserve to be cared for and respected in their facility homes and when those facilities fail to care for and respect their patients, they should be held accountable.



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