Chattanooga Fire Department asks community to help prevent dangerous fires in homeless encampments

blaze fire flame texture background - stock photo fire tile / Getty Images
blaze fire flame texture background - stock photo fire tile / Getty Images

The Chattanooga Fire Department is asking community residents to not bring flammable or combustible materials into homeless encampments after a recent fire.

The fire burned down two structures that had been made from old dry pallets and had tents on both sides. Fire officials collected over 80 propane tanks from the area and will conduct more checks of homeless camps to prevent more fires, according to a Chattanooga Fire Department news release.

(READ MORE: Chattanooga's eviction relief initiative has helped 400 individuals and 220 children)

The following items should not be left at homeless encampments:

- Unpermitted or unsafe structures.

- Weapons.

- Drugs or poisons.

- Combustible or explosive items.

- Expired food.

The city is currently working to remove a homeless encampment on 11th Street, citing safety concerns with people being near active railroad tracks. Residents of the encampment were notified last month that Norfolk Southern, the owner of the property, requested they be relocated by May 31.

(READ MORE: America's homeless ranks graying as more retire on streets)

Those who want to help the homeless are encouraged to donate canned goods to Community Kitchen, camping supplies to the Chattanooga Regional Homeless Coalition and furniture to the Chattanooga Furniture Bank. People can also volunteer or make a monetary donation through the Chattanooga Regional Homeless Coalition.

(READ MORE: Chattanooga organizations consider building small shelters for homeless people)

- Compiled by Kim Sebring

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