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Senseless tragedy

John R. Hall
John R. Hall Member Posts: 2,246
Five children and their mother, pregnant with twins, died in a house fire in Pontiac, Mich. Tuesday evening.

Tragic enough.

The tragedy is compunded by the fact that the home was unfit for occupancy, including no smoke detectors and sewage backing up into the basement.

A window air conditioner, plugged into a strip outlet, began smoldering and caught the couch and carpeting on fire. The smoke combined with a build-up of methane gas from the basement, causing a lethal combination. But smoke detectors would have alerted the family.

It appears that the immigrant family lived on a tight budget and probably couldn't even afford smoke detectors, which should have been provided by the landlord anyway.

It goes to show that we can beat our heads against the wall, telling people about the need for working smoke detectors and CO detectors. But as the saying goes, "You can lead a horse to water..."

Too bad there are so many horse's asses out there. In this case, little children, unborn children and their mother were the victims. Sad. Senseless.

Here is an excerpt from the story, citing the code violations:

City of Pontiac inspectors noted the following violations on May 2 at 602 N. Perry, where six people died Tuesday night.
The owner was given until Oct. 1 to repair them. City officials said they have no record that the repairs were made. The violations included:

Sewer backing up in the basement.

Exposed wiring in a basement wall.

Steps need a handrail.

Windows won't stay open.

Missing caulk around a toilet and tub.

All floors and bedrooms must have a working smoke detector.

Repair all wood on window sills.
There was no certificate of occupancy for the house pending repairs and reinspection.

The notice also said:

"Warning: Damage or injury resulting from delay or failure to comply with this notice will be attributed to negligence on the part of the responsible party or parties."
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