Kalamazoo, MI: On Monday, October 17th, at approximately 1218 a.m., Kalamazoo Public Safety was alerted to a house fire in the 700 block of Skinner Ave. The fire was reported by a citizen who noticed it while driving through the area.
Responding Public Safety Officers discovered the home heavily involved in fire. The home was not occupied and was currently posted condemned. The homeowner happened to be at the property at the time of the blaze, but were not inside at the time of the fire. Adding to the difficulty of the fire was the fact that the home was a “hoarders” residence on the inside and the exterior. The hoarding conditions led to rapid fire extension in the home and hampered extinguishment efforts outside of the home due to the immense amount of property on the exterior of the home. With no rescue of any occupants needed and the extensive hoarding conditions, a defensive fire attack was conducted. A business next to the home had to be protected from radiant heat during the incident. The business had minor water damage from the extensive amounts of water used to extinguish the fire. It took over an hour to control the fire and then several more hours to control hot spots. Excavation equipment had to be called to the scene to raze the building and fully extinguish the fire. No injuries were reported.
Public safety personnel remain on the scene at this time continuing to extinguish “hot spots” and remove debris from the building. The Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating the cause of the fire.
Anyone who may have information about this fire is asked to contact the Fire Marshal at 337-8101, Public Safety at 337-994 or Silent Observer at 343-2100 or www.kalamazoosilentobserver.com.
By authority of: Lt. Sean Gordon
Date: October 17, 2016
Address: 150 E. Crosstown Parkway, Kalamazoo, MI 49001
Contact: Captain Vernon Coakley, Operations Division, 337-8140