A fire alarm went off at an assisted living facility shortly before 10 am Wednesday, Nov. 15th. It sent New Albany Fire Department (NAFD) and other emergency personnel scampering to the scene on Munsford Drive on the west side of New Albany.
The fire department got the alarm at 9:48 am and, from both fire stations, a total of three fire engines rushed to Magnolia Place, a facility that is home to 35 elderly residents.
By the time the first NAFD units arrived, a few minutes before 10 am, the Magnolia Place staff had evacuated all residents from the building, according to Assistant NAFD Chief, Mark Whiteside.
Apparentl,y steam from a shower tricked a smoke alarm in a new security system, causing a full-out fire drill for the Magnolia staff and residents.
Art Shannon, a vice-president of Hickory Senior Living, which operates Magnolia and seven other such facilities in this area, praised the work of Magnolia Director Wanda Pannell and her staff in getting the residents out so fast. All residents at Magnolia have limitations, some severe disabilities, which impairs their mobility and ability to care for themselves.
“We take the health and safety of our residents very seriously,” said Shannon. “We train and manage our staff to deal with situations such as this one.” He also commended the professional and speedy response of the NAFD and other emergency agencies.