Flint Fire Department battles another fire at condemned Richfield Court complex
City of Flint will disconnect utilities and start boarding up condemned buildings on April 30
FLINT, Mich. (WJRT) - Another fire was reported at an abandoned Flint apartment complex on Monday evening.
The city condemned Richfield Court Apartments in Feafter a series of ABC12 News reports about unlivable conditions, such as broken windows, burst water pipes and flooding. Dozens of families found new housing with help from the city and several area nonprofit organizations.
But problems continued after most of the residents left.
Last month, firefighters arrived a little after 5 a.m. to put out a fire. Families still living there were forced to escape, losing everything. A month later at 5:51 p.m. Monday, three separate fires were burning at the same time in three separate buildings in the complex.
”One small fire each in each building and upstairs, but they extinguished quickly and we were able to concentrate our efforts on this building here,” Flint Fire Department Battalion Chief Ramsey Clapper said.
He called for mutual aid from the Burton and Genesee Township fire departments in case it got out of control, but firefighters were able to extinguish the fires without any injuries.
Firefighters initially were told somebody could be trapped inside. They didn’t find anybody, but they still have to stay alert.
”All the buildings in this complex are supposed to condemned and no one is here, however there are reports of some squatters living in some of buildings, so we have to treat it as if someone is in the building right now,” Clapper said.
He said the fires on Monday evening are suspicious and Michigan State Police are investigating.
In the meantime, the city will be taking action to keep the community safe.
“The fires at Richfield Court are among the reasons the City of Flint has been aggressively pursuing legal action against the owners. Our victories in court will allow us to better secure the property,” the city said in a statement Monday.
That includes disconnecting all utilities on April 30 and boarding up the buildings. Clapper said he’s also requesting the Flint Police Department to drive through the complex frequently to prevent future fires.
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