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CRFD looking into potential violations after apartment residents say they have no heat

Published: Dec. 1, 2021 at 11:01 PM EST|Updated: Dec. 1, 2021 at 11:54 PM EST
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COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - The Columbia Richland Fire Department is investigating an apartment complex where residents say they have been living without heat and carbon monoxide detectors.

The people who live at Boulder Creek Apartments on Bentley Court, off Broad River Road say this has been a problem for months.

“Thanksgiving day my thermostat was 65 degrees in my apartment, this morning my thermostat said 67 degrees,” Melanie Swygert said.

The tenants say they reached out to management but the only fixes they provided were temporary. Feeling ignored, they then reached out to Columbia Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins.

“When you come home you don’t have the comforts of home, because they aren’t fixing the things they’re supposed to fix,” said Sabrina McCoy, a resident.

Jenkins says he was shocked to learn the risks people were taking to stay warm.

“One resident told me they had their stove on and oven on to get heat from the stove,” said Jenkins.

Another resident says her apartment gets so cold she has to use space heaters, which Chief Jenkins says is a fire hazard.

“It’s a ticking a time bomb, any second we’re gonna be in flames,” Swygert said.

Jenkins visited the property Tuesday and took matters into his own hands, investigating the issues for himself in person.

He says there are multiple code violations and went straight to management demanding immediate changes.

After reaching out to the property manager of Boulder Creek Apartments, she said she was not interested in commenting on this story.

Chief Jenkins says he plans to visit the property again sometime this week.

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