Investigation Continues into Fatal Fire

1 decade 2 years 6 months ago Tuesday, November 28 2006 Nov 28, 2006 Tuesday, November 28, 2006 6:52:15 PM CST November 28, 2006 in News

Ruth Vickery lives in Columbia's 15-story Paquin Tower.

"It would be a definite problem, because there are several rooms that are non-ambulatory," she said.

Unlike the Anderson building near Joplin, Vickery's has sprinklers. However, Paquin residents worry how someone in a wheelchair would get down 15 flights of stairs.

Earlier this year, the Columbia Fire Department inspected 40 facilities and found routine or minor issues such as partly-obstructed exits and no alarm testing.

"But the good news is they were very compliant and that's what we look for in our inspection mode is willful compliance," explained Battalion Chief Steve Sapp, "and they were able to get all their violations corrected."

State-owned facilities must have fire drills once a month. But Paquin Tower is not a state-licensed facility, and Vickery said there have been only 2 drills in the 7 years she's lived there. The Columbia Fire Department said Paquin Tower was built with flame-resistant materials in order to slow the spread of any fire.

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