City fire officials are asking some neighbors in Washington Heights to call 911 to report any strange smells or sights today, after two homes experienced electric meter fires.
Fire staff knocked Oaklawn Avenue doors, between Kendall and Howland streets, to notify as many neighbors as possible of the situation. Consumers Energy is in the area making repairs in response.
The Fire Department initially was called to the 100 block of Oaklawn at 8:21 a.m. today for an electric meter on fire. Consumers had responded first, to a call about a smoking electric panel. The staff person who responded noticed the meter smoking, and began work to de-energize the electric infrastructure.
The meter fire was knocked down quickly with a chemical extinguisher, and the Fire Department cleared the scene.
However, additional fire staff were called back to the same block at 8:43 a.m. for a meter fire at the neighboring home, noticed by fire crews still at the scene. Again, the fire was extinguished with a chemical extinguisher, and fire staff checked the area before clearing.
Fire staff spoke to both homeowners, and there were no injuries. Responding were 17 fire personnel and one command officer.
Consumers Energy expected to work on repairs in this area for the next couple of hours. Some neighbors will be without power until the repairs are complete. As of this information, the cause of the problem was unclear.