Fire At Jaycee Towers Knocks Out Power To Entire Building; Shelter Being Set Up For 150 Residents

Monday, March 17, 2014

Chattanooga firefighters rushed to J.C. Towers on W. Martin Luther King Boulevard around 11:30 a.m. on Monday on a reported high rise fire. Battalion Chief Lesley Morgan said firefighters located the fire in a mechanical room on the eighth floor. The firefighters got the fire out in less than 10 minutes, but it generated a lot of smoke, which spread throughout the eighth floor and higher.

The firefighters began to immediately evacuate residents from the eighth floor and above. Chief Morgan called for a second alarm response to bring in additional firefighters to help with the evacuation. Many of the residents had physical disabilities, so the firefighters had to assist or even carry the residents down to the lobby area.

Once it was confirmed that the fire was completely out, the evacuation was stopped and most of the residents were asked to shelter in place. No fire-related injuries were reported, but paramedics with Hamilton County EMS did check out a couple of residents who needed medical attention.

The fire knocked out power to the entire building, and EPB technicians informed the fire department that repairs could take hours and might even stretch into tomorrow before power is fully restored. As a result, Chief Morgan made the decision to evacuate the entire 18-story building, which has approximately 150 residents.

The Salvation Army of Greater Chattanooga was called upon by the Chattanooga Fire Department and was on the scene, providing emotional and spiritual care. The Salvation Army was providing drinks and snacks at Jaycee Towers and Dogwood Manor.

The Salvation Army was preparing to serve dinner at the South Side Recreation Center at 1151 W 40th Street to evacuees.  

The American Red Cross set up a shelter for 150 residents. It was partnering with the American Red Cross to meet the physical and spiritual needs of the evacuees. It is uncertain how long residents will be displaced, and The Salvation Army was preparing to serve as long as needed. 

The McKamey Animal Center has agreed to take care of any displaced pets.

There were some reports that the emergency lights were not working in some parts of the building. Representatives of the fire marshal’s office will be doing a follow-up investigation on that.


Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: ABERCROMBIE, KIMBERLY M  4114 10TH AVE CHATTANOOGA, 37407  Age at Arrest: 41 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County FUGITIVE (CATOOSA COUNTY GA) --- ANDERSON, BRIAN CHRISTOPHER  299 BRELAND STREET CHATTANOOGA, 37415  Age at Arrest: 26 years old Arresting Agency: East Ridge ... (click for more)

City Council To Consider Policy That Job Applicants Would Not Have To Reveal Criminal Records

The City Council on Tuesday night will consider a policy that city job applicants would not have to reveal their criminal past. Councilman Yusuf Hakeem cited problems those with felony records have in securing employment. The policy would go into effect by the first of the year. The resolution says: WHEREAS, the City of Chattanooga (the "City") is committed ... (click for more)

An Extra Helping Of Gratitude

After being thankful for the grace of God, my family and good health, this year I have an extra helping of gratitude to live in a special place called Chattanooga.   We endured the trauma of terrorism on July 16 and emerged more united and stronger than ever before.  We claim our heritage and celebrate our diversity like no other city in America.  We honor our ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: We Can’t ‘Ban The Box’

I know a man who has over 20 former convicts from federal prisons who either work for him or who have retired with their dignity, pride, and self-worth restored. Better yet, I know some of them, men who have done “hard time” in prisons so wretched none of us would dare to go. So on the surface I applaud City Councilman Yusef Hakeem for seeing ways to get formerly incarcerated men ... (click for more)

Alcoa Ends Notre Dame's Season With 42-2 Setback

ALCOA -- It's hard to get past the cold hard facts. Notre Dame's Fighting Irish football team had another outstanding season, but it ended the same way as last year with a semifinal loss to the Alcoa Tornadoes. It wasn't as close as last year's 28-19 defeat as Alcoa gave up a safety in its first possession before scoring 42 straight points, winning for the 10th straight week ... (click for more)

UTC vs Fordham: Battle of Running Backs and QBs

"Fordham's Chase Edmonds is the best running back in the country at the FCS level. We have to contain him and get him on the ground."  -- UTC head coach Russ Huesman     Fordham has the best running back in the FCS nation, a talented quarterback (29 TD passes) and an outstanding linebacker who leads a ball-hawking defense. UTC has an impressive ... (click for more)