Joplin’s Fire Department is urging residents to report any suspicious activity they see around ‘illegally occupied’ structures. Read the full press release below:
Over the past few months, the Joplin Fire Department has seen an increase in fires that involve illegally occupied structures. This can be a storage building, a vacant structure, a shed, or any other structure that is not intended to be occupied and does not have permanent utilities.
In most cases, the occupants will establish water and power through temporary means from neighboring structures with extension cords, generators, garden hoses, etc.
This is an extremely dangerous practice that can often lead to a fire or carbon monoxide poisoning for the occupants living in structures not designed to be permanent housing. Fires in these structures will also threaten neighboring structures resulting in potential damage to them.
We are asking citizens to report these situations if they see a building being used as a residence that does not have utilities, or they believe that no one should be inside the structure.
The “See, Click, Fix” platform is the City’s method for citizens to report issues they find within Joplin and can be accessed HERE
When reporting this, utilize the “illegal occupancy” category for this issue and it will be referred to the appropriate City Department to be investigated. Thank you for working with us to keep our citizens and community safe.