String of fires leaves concerns for safety of firefighters and c - WNEM TV 5

String of fires leaves concerns for safety of firefighters and community

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SAGINAW, MI (WNEM) -

Six fires. Five days.

Saginaw Fire Marshall Ralph Martin said the recent arson in the city is hazardous for two reasons: the safety of the community and the safety of the firefighters.

"I can't understand the reasoning why someone would do something like this," Martin said. "Especially with the temperatures being so high, high humidity. Even small fires are a concern."

Ona Lee Aguilar is the department’s head of safety.

"We don't want anyone to have heat exhaustion, or heat stroke," Aguilar said.

She said fire crews have been busy over the past several days, at times working around the clock chasing fires.

Because of the high temperatures and humidity, she’s been keeping a close eye on the health of crews at the scene.

"I'm watching each person I kind of know what their limitations are," Aguilar said. "I keep an eye on them. If they stop sweating, one of the serious signs of heat stroke."

Putting out all the recent fires and keeping firefighters sage is not the only issue the city is dealing with.

"The red X means they were part of the process the houses were part of our planned demolition," said John Stemple. "That's a sign the structure was coming down soon."

Stemple is with the city zoning and planning department, and he heads up the fight to tackle blight.

These burned structures now become his concern, disrupting the city’s ongoing effort to tear down abandoned structures.

"You try to hurry because of the dangers these types of fires impose," Stemple said.

So far, no one has been charged with starting these fires and there hasn’t been any word or whether or not any of them are connected.

But Martin said it’s only a matter of time before they catch who is responsible.

"Any information would be very helpful," Martin said.

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