capt 8adeba0bce384667aee20536c2915222 e9a8eb1567d2406c88b6d917f3007e93 01 e1284137135427 Detroit Fire Stats: 29 Occupied Homes Burned

(AP Photo/Detroit Free Press, Marcin Szczepanski)

City officials say preliminary reports show 29 occupied homes were among 71 structures that burned during a series of wind-fed fires that struck a number of Detroit neighborhoods.

Mayor Dave Bing’s office said Friday in a release that 50 of the structures have been added to a list for emergency demolition within 30 days. Six were torn down Friday morning.

No injuries were reported Tuesday from the blazes that hit areas across Detroit.

Fire officials earlier said downed power lines may have started eight fires, while two others appeared to be the work of arsonists. [photogallerylink id=26013 align=right]

City officials met Friday with DTE Energy Co. representatives and identified arcing wires, illegal electrical hookups and the utility’s response to reports of downed wires among issues to be investigated.

The Committee Against Utility Shutoffs is blaming the devastation on budget cuts and DTE Energy. Socialist State House of Representative Candidate D’Artagnan Collier held a news conference on Robinwood to say the fires could have been avoided.

“The devastation caused by these fires is the direct result of, one: budget cutting, even after the city has handed out tax cut after tax cut to corporations. And, two: the negligence and cost-cutting of DTE [Energy],” Collier said.

Meantime, demolition crews were expected to tear down the first two of about 20 houses gutted by fires that raged earlier this week across parts of Detroit. More on this.

The Mayor’s office established a telephone line (313) 224-3740 for displaced families to receive support and assistance from local agencies
(Copyright 2010 WWJ Radio.  All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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