L&I Completes Crackdown On Abandoned Philadelphia Warehouses

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia building inspectors have completed a crack down on old warehouses that have been converted to other uses, often illegally.

It was the December fire that killed 36 people in Oakland that prompted the crackdown.

Since then, Licenses and Inspections and the Fire Department have inspected 800 industrial buildings that were supposed to be vacant, and found many of them subdivided and jerry-rigged for use as residences, shops, and, most dangerously, night clubs.

L&I commissioner Dave Perri says inspectors found blocked exits, broken fire alarms, and other dangers.

“The combination of low lighting, loud music, alcohol, and dense crowds can be deadly in a building that is not equipped with the required safety equipment and exits,” Perri said.

Perri notes the Ghost Ship owners were charged with 36 felony manslaughter counts last week, which he says should be a warning to warehouse owners everywhere.

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