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Fire Safety Concern Shuts Down Occupy Philly’s Warming Hut

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — City officials this morning removed a potentially dangerous propane tank from a structure set up by protesters at the “Occupy Philadelphia” encampment.

Members of Occupy Philadelphia had set up what was called a “warming station” — a makeshift structure with a propane-fired heater running inside, to provide warmth.

warming station sign dunn Fire Safety Concern Shuts Down Occupy Phillys Warming HutBut Rich Negrin, the city’s managing director, says the apparatus was a fire hazard and was removed without incident.

“Their hope was to have a warming tent as the weather changes, to bring people in there to keep warm,” Negrin explained to KYW Newsradio.  “I understand that, but that doesn’t eliminate the public safety risk, and we just can’t take those chances.”

Still unclear is what the city will do the first night at which temperatures fall to dangerous levels.  Usually a “Code Blue” emergency is declared, during which people living on the streets are forcibly moved to shelters for their own safety.

Reported by KYW City Hall bureau chief Mike Dunn

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