Fire destroys 8 apartments in Shelby Township

By: Joshua Gordon | Shelby - Utica News | Published May 14, 2018

 A fire May 6 at the Lakeside Park Apartments in Shelby Township destroyed eight apartments and caused damage to eight others. No one was hurt in the fire.

A fire May 6 at the Lakeside Park Apartments in Shelby Township destroyed eight apartments and caused damage to eight others. No one was hurt in the fire.

Photo by Joshua Gordon

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — At least eight apartments were destroyed in a fire May 6 in Shelby Township, but no one was injured during the incident.

Shelby Township Fire Chief Jim Swinkowski said that his department received a call about an apartment fire at 9 a.m. at Lakeside Park Apartments, located off Hayes Road between M-59 and 21 Mile Road, north of the shopping complex that is home to Meijer and Costco.

Swinkowski said that when crews arrived, the fire was already through the roof of the building, which houses several apartments, and the call was made to make it a two-alarm fire. In doing so, Shelby Township received aid from the Macomb Township, Sterling Heights and Utica fire departments.

“The residents woke up on Sunday morning and heard the fire alarm going off and smelled something burning in the apartment,” Swinkowski said. “By the time we got there, it was rolling pretty good.”

The firefighters eventually stopped the fire halfway through the building, but Swinkowski said at least eight apartment units were totally lost.

There may be more damage, but Swinkowski said that part of the building is not structurally sound, with a wall bowing out. Because of this, the investigators had to wait to get into the building to look at a cause and assess damage.

The apartment complex’s insurance company was called, and Swinkowski said their investigator along with the Shelby Township fire marshal will meet and determine where the fire started and what led to it.

Everyone was able to get out of the apartments, including some dogs, and no residents or firefighters were hurt in the fire. The firefighters were on the scene until around 2 p.m. May 6.

“It is a big building with two stories, so we were able to stop the fire halfway,” Swinkowski said last week. “Our investigators haven’t gotten into the building, but at this point there is nothing suspicious.”

Swinkowski said all eight of the apartments that received severe damage had been occupied. In total, he said 16 apartments received some sort of smoke or water damage. The building is located in the west section of the complex.

If the building can be saved, Swinkowski said the eight apartments that didn’t immediately look destroyed should be salvageable.

“I think all the crews did an outstanding job,” Swinkowski said. “It was a real big team effort to keep the fire contained in half the building.”

The fire was the third large one in less than a week in Macomb County. A fire in a Macomb Township home’s garage May 8 may have been caused by an explosion, while a May 2 fire in Warren damaged numerous apartments.