Fire News

Published March 11, 2017

Fire officials said the cause of an early morning Saturday house fire that took the life of a 72-year-old woman is still under investigation.

According to a statement issued by Royal Oak Police Department Criminal Investigations Division Lt. Keith Spencer, the fire occurred in the 300 block of South Minerva Avenue March 11.

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Published March 9, 2017

City officials said the Royal Oak Police and Fire departments handled an extremely large number of calls March 8 after high winds ripped through the community.

“Our men and women were very busy yesterday responding to the downed wires, responding to the downed trees and ensuring safety,” said Lt. Keith Spencer, of the Royal Oak Police Department Criminal Investigations Division.

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Published March 8, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Shelby Township Fire Chief Jim Swinkowski said Fire Station No. 5, located at 21 Mile and Schoenherr roads, is approximately six weeks from completion.

Crews are still working on the inside, so Swinkowski did not have a timetable of when it would be operational, but he estimated that the endeavor would wrap up around the end of March or mid-April.

The next project the Fire Department has its eye on is the relocation of Fire Station No. 4, currently located near 23 Mile and Schoenherr roads, to property it owns at 25 Mile and Schoenherr roads.

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Published March 7, 2017

EASTPOINTE — Lt. Michael Hewelt, a 17-year resident of Eastpointe and an 18-year member of the Eastpointe Fire Department, was scheduled to be honored as Firefighter of the Year for 2016 and receive the Medal of Valor from the Macomb County Fire Chiefs Association March 3 for his efforts to rescue two women from a house fire in January 2016.

“Hewelt commanded a four-man team of firefighters who were called to a fire in progress with occupants trapped inside a home on Sprenger Avenue on Jan. 10, 2016,” according to an Eastpointe press release.

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Published March 3, 2017

ST. CLAIR SHORES — Could you climb 71 flights of stairs and make it to the top? 

What if you were hauling 50 extra pounds and racing up each stair?

Six members of the St. Clair Shores Fire Department did just that Feb. 26, beating 46 other fire departments to the top of the Renaissance Center in Detroit during the Fight for Air Stair Climb, which benefits the American Lung Association.

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Published March 1, 2017

TROY — Although construction work on Fire Station 4, on Maple Road, hit a slight setback due to rains earlier this month, the station is set to open in July. 

“We’re a little ahead of schedule,” said Troy Fire Chief Dave Roberts. 

The Planning Commission unanimously approved designs for the new fire station next to the old one on Maple Road, east of John R, at its June 28 meeting.

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Published March 1, 2017

TROY — A clothes dryer caught fire in a single-story home on Post Drive, near John R and Long Lake roads, just after 2:30 p.m. Feb. 26. 

Firefighters arrived on the scene to find everyone out of the home and a fire in the laundry room, said Troy Assistant Fire Chief Richard Riesterer. 

Firefighters searched to ensure everyone was out of the home, quickly extinguished the blaze, then ventilated the smoke from the home, according to a fire report. 

The homeowner had used a fire extinguisher to try to put out the fire, officials said. 

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Published February 14, 2017

At approximately 6:35 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 14, the Shelby Township Police and Fire departments responded to a report of a boy who had fallen through the ice on a lake at the Crystal Lake Apartments, located near 23 Mile and Dequindre roads.

Upon arrival, a firefighter dressed in a cold water exposure suit swam out and located the boy holding his younger sister in the water, and the firefighter brought both children safely to shore, according to a Fire Department press release.

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Published February 3, 2017

Around 40 local families are without a home after a fire broke out at their apartment complex Feb. 3.

According to Southfield Fire Chief Johnny Menifee, a 911 call came in around 11:52 a.m. from maintenance workers at Carnegie Park Apartments, 26601 W Carnegie Park Drive, who said they noticed smoke and fire.

Firefighters arrived at the scene six minutes later, Menifee said, and were met with heavy smoke and fire billowing from one of the apartment units.

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Published February 3, 2017

WARREN — A fire at the city’s Waste Water Treatment Plant damaged a conveyor belt and electronic controls Jan. 21, resulting in “significant” damage that could have been much worse if not for the “textbook” response from the Warren Fire Department. 

Fire Commissioner Wilburt “Skip” McAdams said fire crews were dispatched to the plant on Warkop, just south of 14 Mile Road and east of Van Dyke, at about 3 p.m. after the system that dries solid waste removed from wastewater overheated and caught fire.

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Published February 2, 2017

HARPER WOODS — Harper Woods and Detroit residents are mourning the loss of former Detroit fireman Robert Wieczorkowski, 70, who was caught in a fire in his home.

The Harper Woods Department of Public Safety, which encompasses both the community’s police and fire services, received a 911 call at 11 a.m. Jan. 20 from a home in the 19400 block of Kingsville. The resident, Wieczorkowski, reported that his home was on fire and he needed help. Firefighters reportedly were dispatched to the scene immediately.

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Published January 31, 2017

MACOMB TOWNSHIP — A combination of several factors may soon lead to the construction of a joint fire and police station building, just east of the 23 Mile Road and Romeo Plank intersection.

The location of the building would be on the same lot that currently houses Macomb Township’s Fire Station No. 1, a Macomb County Sheriff’s office substation, a communications tower and a senior center.

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Published January 25, 2017

ST. CLAIR SHORES — City Council approved the purchase of a new rescue pumper for the Fire Department Jan. 16, replacing a 21-year-old vehicle with more than 124,000 miles.

“Our firefighting fleet is aging,” said Fire Chief George Morehouse. “Four of our vehicles are over 20 years of age.”

Weather and salt have combined to hasten the decline of the frames of the vehicles, and one of the department’s engines, Engine 5, was taken out of rotation a month ago because it failed a Michigan Department of Transportation inspection.

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Published January 17, 2017

ST. CLAIR SHORES — Taking an association “into the 21st century,” City Council voted to have the St. Clair Shores Fire Department join the Michigan Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS) this month.

“Macomb County fire chiefs have decided to take the Fire Chiefs Association into the 21st century by making this a legal entity,” said Fire Chief George Morehouse. 

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Published January 11, 2017

Two families have had a rough start to the new year, with St. Clair Shores Fire Department responding to fires in the city Jan. 8-9.

Just after midnight Jan. 8, firefighters were called to the 20000 block of Maxine for a report a house filled with smoke coming from the chimney.

The four residents told fire officials they were awoken by smoke detectors, so they and their dog were able to get out of the home. They said they had had a fire in the fireplace earlier in the evening, but had put it out before going to bed.

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Published January 11, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — On Dec. 21, the Shelby Township Board of Trustees unanimously approved a two-year extension of Fire Chief Jim Swinkowski’s contract.

The extension takes his contract through Feb. 18, 2021. His contract previously was set to expire Feb. 18, 2019.

The contract includes a salary jump from $107,610 to $116,590 — a flat rate without performance bonuses — and a reduction in the amount of cash payment for unused vacation hours, from 80 to 40.

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Published January 10, 2017

The Police and Fire departments in Sterling Heights are expecting staff or program changes to continue even as the demand for their service grows.

According to Sterling Heights Police Chief John Berg, police took 54,922 calls for service in 2016, a 6.3 percent increase compared to 2015’s 51,643 calls. He said he didn’t yet have specifics on the breakdown of what those calls entailed.

“We saw a surge in the amount of calls for service in the city,” he said.

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Published December 29, 2016

WARREN — A floral delivery worker and a DTE Energy employee are being credited with saving an elderly Warren woman from a house fire near Frazho and Mound on the afternoon of Dec. 15.

Warren Fire Commissioner Wilburt “Skip” McAdams said firefighters were dispatched at 1:51 p.m. to the 6100 block of Mackersie, east of Mound and just south of Interstate 696, where they learned that a resident had been rescued from the burning home by two civilians.

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Published December 26, 2016

A neighbor across the street alerted Troy firefighters to a house fire on Tewksbury Drive, near Adams Road and south Boulevard, just after 8:15 p.m. Dec. 23.

Firefighters arrived at the large, one-story home with a walk-out basement to find smoke and fire visible from the east end of the home and through the roof of the home, according to reports.

Neighbors told firefighters that the sole resident of the home was not there, Troy Assistant Fire Chief Chuck Riesterer said in a prepared statement.

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Published December 23, 2016

MOUNT CLEMENS — A Macomb County woman was behind bars after she allegedly set fire to a Mount Clemens rental home she once lived in.

Madalyn Marie Soulliere, 43, is charged with first-degree arson, a life felony. She was arraigned in 41-B District Court in Mount Clemens on Dec. 22.

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