Firefighters living in a camper at the fire station until mold is removed

Local News

MAUMELLE, Ark.- After mold started making firefighters sick at Maumelle fire station two, it closed down for a month.

The station has partially reopened but the mold is still in the building.

Currently, there is a big camper in one of the parking spots meant for a ladder truck, this is being used as the dorm, bathroom and kitchen.

The part of the building where mold was found, is still closed off.

We got a tour of the temporary living space.

“Just a little kitchen and bedroom in the back,” said Ryan Kotch, Firefighter.

It’s a temporary fix and Firefighter Ryan Kotch says it’s better than getting sick from mold.

“It’s not ideal but it is necessary it’s working and it working now and it will work until they get the problem addressed,” said Kotch.

Kotch said he had gotten sick from the mold but not as severe as some of his employees.

Outside the RV, a full living room is set up with a couch, half a dozen recliners, tv and tables.

“It’s where the trucks live and now its where the people and the trucks live,” said Michael Cossey, Division Chief.

Division Chief Michael Cossey says it all started when people started having severe allergies, at first it didn’t add up until they found the mold.

“We closed this fire station and it was completely shut down for 26 days and we had to move all of our apparatus and people to the other fire station,” said Cossey.

Which lead to the camper solution, which was not only safer for staff but also for the community.

“Our response time more than doubled to some parts of the city because this station was closed,” said Cossey.

“It was crucial to get back here as soon as possible,” said Kotch.

Currently, the station is working to fix the mold problem and also trying to find where it’s coming from.

“That process is at least ongoing so we are looking for that to wrap that up pretty soon,” said Cossey.

Until then, firefighters at station two will continue to camp out.

There is no timeline for when the station will be fully fixed.

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