The Charlotte Fire Department has cited a northwest Charlotte apartment complex several times for not having enough fire extinguishers on the property.
Charlotte Fire Marshal Kevin Miller said the missing fire extinguishers are an ongoing problem.
“If that was the first time that we have fire extinguishers missing at an apartment complex, it wouldn’t be such a big issue, but because it’s Scarlet (Pointe) Apartments and we’ve had that issue in the past,” he said.
Channel 9 has reported on the Scarlet Pointe Apartments after residents said living conditions there were dangerous and unsafe.
“Every time we go out there, there’s been some issues with extinguishers,” Miller said. “Either they’re out of service or it’s just not there, and we address it each time on those on our reports.”
The most recent inspection was on Jan. 12.
The complex was cited for two missing fire extinguishers, along with broken extinguisher cabinets.
However, that was an improvement from the Dec. 19 inspection, which showed five missing extinguishers.
Miller said it’s important that all extinguishers are in place, especially considering the complex has had several fires over the past couple of years.
“Especially in places like this that don’t have sprinkler systems,” Miller said. “We want to make sure that small fires can be, at least, kept at bay.
The turnover rate for the apartment’s management team is also a problem.
Miller said it makes it difficult to perform inspections with no management on site.
“(There was) no accountable representation here at the time,” Miller said. “Nobody for maintenance. We had a couple of residents there, but we can’t go on what residents say.”
Miller said the fire department will continue to hold management accountable and work with them to keep residents safe.
“The absolute last thing that anybody wants to do is displace people,” he said. “However, we cannot allow people to live in unsafe conditions.”
The fire marshal said it is the complex’s responsibility to replace missing or damaged fire extinguishers.
Channel 9 reached out to the property owner but has not heard back.
VIDEO: Residents live in unbearable conditions at northwest Charlotte apartments