AFR crews respond to more abandoned structure fires
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Just before midnight, Albuquerque Fire Rescue had a busy start to their morning, with two abandoned house fires within minutes. One of which they say was a total loss.
“Structural members of the house that took them a little bit longer to access the house, get into the fire and get that fire under control,” said AFR Spokesperson Lt. Jason Fejer.
He says the problem with structured buildings is once they burn, they have to take out some of the structure.
“We pull out a ceiling, and we pull the drywall down in walls because the higher fire will hide in those pockets. And then, we end up having to come back and put it out again,” said Fejer.
Once they strip the building, if it catches on fire again, it will spread quickly.
“We’re pretty diligent about stripping all that, which unfortunately, sets a bad situation for us if we have to come back,” said Fejer.
Fejer says it seems that these fires are happening more often.
“Once they burned once, a lot of times we do see them burn again,” Fejer said.
Gary, a neighbor KOB 4 talked to, says these properties are nothing but trouble.
“Every day there is always a lot of drug trafficking around here, homeless people sleeping on the porch,” said Gary.
A spokesperson from the Albuquerque Planning Department tells us these two properties are on code enforcement’s radar.
Neighbors say, if something isn’t done soon, they worry about what could happen.
“Somebody is going to get hurt. This guy’s house was almost on fire last night. These people here, I feel sorry for them too because somebody is going to lose their home,” said Gary.
A city rep says they have filed for an emergency demolition of the property on Chama. There is no telling what caused the two fires.