Understanding property inspections after February 6 house fire

Local News

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KCAU) – Sioux City saw the deadliest house fire since 1983 last week, which resulted in the loss of three people.

The owner of the property told KCAU 9 he had smoke detectors, but Sioux City Fire Rescue said they could not locate any on scene.

To better understand how property inspections work for rental homes and apartments, KCAU spoke with the manager of Preswick Apartments to find out how they keep their tenants safe.

Chad Johnson, Preswick Apartments manager said without a doubt the blame always falls on the property owner.

“When it comes to a safety issue, we really don’t mess with who is responsible for it, we just fix it. We generally just put it on us, unless it’s something really bad or blatantly obvious that they did. You don’t try to charge people for safety issues. You want to make sure that they are all there, it is just that important,” Johnson shared.

The investigation of the house fire is still underway and no new information has been released yet.

On Thursday, KCAU 9 tried to reach out to Sioux City Inspectors, but they would not comment on how house inspections work.

“For someone running a house, they would get inspected also by the city. I wouldn’t think the standards would be nearly as strict. I would think they wouldn’t be too different, it would just be the city inspecting that. Likely, we would get inspected a lot more often and by different people so it’s tougher standards in the apartment industry,” Johnson added.

Johnson said Preswick Apartments is prepared for a fire with sprinklers in every apartment and a fire detector that will notify Sioux City Fire Rescue exactly where the fire is in the complex.

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