A fire started by a short in an electric blanket swept through one unit of a San Pedro retirement home late Tuesday night, injuring an elderly woman, authorities said Wednesday.
The fire at La Villa Mesa retirement home at 805 S. Mesa St. broke out in a ground floor apartment at 10:55 p.m. Tuesday, sending smoke billowing up through the three-story building, said Greg Acevedo, a Fire Department spokesman.
Firefighters contained the flames to the single unit, putting out the blaze in less than 20 minutes. Damages to the building and its contents were estimated at $50,000.
Most of the 40 to 50 residents were awakened by smoke alarms and were safely outside the building when the firefighters arrived, Acevedo said. One resident, Margaret Putney, 80, was taken to San Pedro Peninsula Hospital for smoke inhalation and was in good condition late Wednesday, hospital spokeswoman Laurie Lundberg said.
One of the 40 firefighters who helped extinguish the blaze was checked for possible smoke inhalation at the hospital, Acevedo said.