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Toledo neighbors sick of debris left from November fire

Published: Mar. 10, 2021 at 10:06 AM EST
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TOLEDO, Ohio (WTVG) - A burned-out wood and junk pile are all that’s sitting next to homes in Toledo’s south end. Neighbors say they’re sick of looking at the pile that’s been there since November after a garage burned down.

The problem is in the 700 block of Balfe off Broadway. It’s something people thought would be long gone but still sits there.

As Melody McKelvin watched the garage structure next door to her home burn in November, the heat damaged some of her home.

“Oh my God, it was huge, it was just a massive flame. It was huge,” said McKelvin.

When firefighters got it under control, the next step, she assumed, was to clear the mess left behind.

“The city came out and I was expecting that after they put the fire out on the tree that they were going to clean up the debris, clean up the actual wood piles,” said McKelvin.

Months later the piles of logs, branches, and burned up garbage are still here. It’s leaving a dangerous, unsightly mess and with the snow gone, it’s all visible.

“It’s an eyesore, it’s nasty, it’s spilling over into my yard. Then there’s a huge rat problem and a cat problem going on. I see things crawling into there,” said McKelvin.

This property does have an owner, a company listed out of North Carolina. They are the ones ultimately responsible to clean it.

“I’ve tried to personally get in touch with them, write them letters or whatever but no answers,” said McKelvin.

Toledo fire investigators tell 13abc they believe the fire was intentionally set but the origin was undetermined. So people like McKelvin are stuck with a problem they didn’t cause and hope soon it will be addressed.

She did report this to the City of Toledo’s Engage Toledo system. That’s the first step for anyone with a problem like this. That happened just over a week ago. She was told an inspector will come out.

The I-Team did speak with one of the owners of the property. He told us he wasn’t aware of the fire and said “we’ll have to take care of the debris.” There was no timetable put on when that would happen.

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