Sunday, June 8, 2014

View from My Window (Shudder)

Someone in our alley likes to live dangerously. Check out the fire escape at the top of this photo, and in the [blurry] close-up below:

I see two potentially terrible scenarios here:

A.  Charcoal grill on fire escape, violating the Boston Fire Department's regulations:
The following regulations apply to the use of portable charcoal and liquified petroleum gas (LPG) operated cooking grilles on or within a building or structure and includes balconies, fire escapes, porches, roofs as a part thereof. (This does not apply to natural gas grills permitted through ISD and installed by a licensed installer in accordance with all applicable codes nd standards).
Charcoal Grills
Under the authority of Article 1, section 1.05(b), the Boston Fire Department prohibits the use of portable charcoal cooking grilles on or within a building or structure for the following reasons:
  • Improper use of starter fuel resulting in burn.
  • Numerous fire safety complaints to the Boston Fire Department by persons within or near the building.
  • Wind velocity affecting open flame.
  • Fire hazard conditions high or extreme.
  • Resultant Fire Department response due to persons observing assumed building fire from a distance and/or reports of smoke odor from an assumed building fire in the area.
  • Lack of attendance resulting in unwarranted smoke pollution. Danger of explosive gas build up. 
  • Charcoal grills inside a house, garage or any enclosed area, may cause carbon monoxide to accumulate and could cause serious injury or death.
  • Hot coals/ashes in close proximity to combustibles.
B.  Lovely cat, wandering around on third-floor fire escape, risking High-rise Syndrome

We have laws to enforce fire safety, but we don't have laws to protect that cat. According to that Wikipedia link, a cat who survives a fall of more than two stories has a 90 percent chance of recovering from its injuries, which commonly include a broken jaw, broken legs, torn ligaments, shattered teeth, and internal injuries, especially to the lungs. 

If you live above the first floor, please keep your charcoal grill on the ground, safely away from buildings and wooden structures like decks and fencing, and KEEP YOUR CATS INSIDE. 


  1. Cringe!! and not just because they risk burning down the building while blocking the fire escape but mostly because of the cat! It looks very similar to my old man Ross. I hope he is a careful tux.

  2. Never ceases to amaze how stupid some people can be. I'm worrying about the cat now and their neighbours


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