Fighting fires at homes with hoarders makes dangerous job even worse


by Chris Patterson

MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee firefighters say their job is tough enough dealing with smoke and fire. All the junk found inside the homes of hoarders can make fighting fires more dangerous than usual.

Firefighters responded to a two-alarm fire at the home of a hoarder near S. 29th St. and Forest Home Ave. Milwaukee Fire Department Deputy Chief Aaron Lipski says, "That acts a lot like a campfire, but it's trapped inside a building so it burns pretty violently."

Milwaukee Fire Department Battalion Chief David Votsis says, "It makes our job more difficult. It makes our likelihood of finding you in a fire much less."

Fortunately, the three people who were inside when the fire started got out safely. According to the Milwaukee Fire Department cases of hoarding are on the rise.

The Milwaukee Department of Neighborhood Services is looking into safety hazards like hoarding. They are currently investigating 10 hoarding cases.

Neighborhood Services say they received a number of complaints about this house.


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