A large apartment building that caught fire for the second time in the last six months has neighbors calling for it to be torn down.
This building is not only an eyesore in the city, but according to firemen it is also a safety hazard. It seems squatters have moved into the abandoned building.
“We were blown away that last night it caught on fire again,” stated neighbor Brooke Martin.
Brooke Martin and her family have lived on this street for five years. She says it’s time for this building to go.
“It was insane the first time. It was during the morning and it woke us up,” Martin explained. “It was really scary because it was two houses down.”
Last August, a massive fire tore through the complex, on the 500 block of East Chestnut Street, displacing all the residents. Since then, it has been boarded up.
But Monday night it caught on fire again. Lancaster Fire Chief Tim Gregg said that squatters may have moved into the building that has no water, electric or heat.
When fires start in abandoned buildings it’s dangerous for firemen who may have to go inside to save someone who shouldn’t be there.
“There’s been some high profile fires around the country where firefighters were lost looking for squatters in buildings that weren’t even in there,” explained Lancaster Fire Chief Tim Gregg. “So, it’s a really dangerous situation for us.”
“I would love to see it torn down and maybe rebuilt with something nice or just torn down because it’s kind of an eyesore,” Martin added. “And saying ‘kind of’ is putting it lightly.”
Officials are still investigating to find the cause of the fire. For safety reasons, if you think squatters have moved into a building the fire chief recommends you call police.