26 December 2007

KingCast gives mad daps to (er, vigorously supports) Gloucester & Newburyport reporters & Firegeezer.com for coverage of deadly Gloucester NH fire.

Firegeezer is on point.
Gloucester Times is also on point.
Newburyport News is on point. Actually I had missed the Newbury story "Fear of Fire prompted family's move" but it sure is a good one. I'll just post a short long excerpt and encourage folks to actually put down the cathode ray or giant plasma nipple they're chewing on and actually read all of the first links as well as the links in my most recent post, "Rut-ro....."
The family always told Taylor, who was 70, that he should move.

"He kept saying, 'I'm living on borrowed time living in this firetrap,'" Kushin said. But her fears grew. Kushin said there were no fire escapes and that the building was well out of code. "Everybody in the building knew it was a firetrap," Kushin said.The building's heating system was sporadic, Kushin said, heating up to the 80s and then turning off for hours, allowing the temperatures to drop to the low 60s.

Kushin said many people used space heaters to help heat apartments when the heat wasn't working and said she "wouldn't be surprised at all" if that were the cause of the fire.

"The heating system was very much like you never knew when it would come on," she said. One day, her husband encouraged her to go to the fire station to see firefighters to possibly ease her fears. She asked what plans were in place for the building and the answer she received was "the last straw."

"They said, 'Our plan is to watch it go up like a tinderbox,'" she said. "I said 'Oh my God, there is no hope.'"

Folks taking short cuts with my friend's life, not cool. She was a recent tenant (summer '07) unaware of the history. For those of you who have never been in or near a fire (I have been) let me tell you something: Don't assume anything. Not one thing. When the alarm goes off, you go around until you are certain you have identified the source. You can save a life if you do the right thing; might even be your own.

Related site: Workingfirefighters.com
Related posts: Mad respect for firefighters one and two.


Christopher King said...

From this Gloucester Times story, "Tenants describe chaotic fire scene."

"The residents were not given blankets, and one woman was barefoot, having left the building without shoes on, Burton said."

Bingo. That would be "S.S." Totally corroborates what she told me the day after the fire. She had no shoes on because she works her ass off and she sleeps soundly; almost rolled over when she heard the fire alarm thinking it was her phone alarm clock or whatever.

When she finally realized what was up the last thing on her mind was some damn shoes; she was trying to get the hell out of Dodge.

Christopher King said...

"S.S." was Karen Kushin's next-door neighbor if you read the Newburyport story, they both lived on the Fourth Floor above Robert Taylor.

I asked her last night if she knew them and she did know them in passing (in typical New England fashion you often don't know your neighbors) but she did not know why Kushin and her family moved.

Just as she didn't know about the missing occupancy/health certificates.

Unknown said...

This is Karen Kushin writing. Any questions? And I am still having nightmares after living in that building for 4 years...first in #17 and then over to #20...for a better view. I feel so bad that I was telling my neighbors (especially Joe S) on the day of the U-Haul that we were moving because I was so afraid of a fire in that building. I still don't know if we would have gotten out, right above Bob. Joe looked pretty nervous after I said that to him. Sorry Joe.

Christopher King said...

Shoot me an email.