Tulsa Fires, Carbon Monoxide Incidents Increase Following Storm

Tulsa firefighters responded to 18 carbon monoxide calls on Tuesday and just eight on Wednesday. As of Thursday evening, they've responded to a dozen. At least one of those had to do with a generator running too close to an open window.

Thursday, June 22nd 2023, 9:23 pm



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Tulsa Firefighters said they've seen an increase in fires and carbon monoxide calls since the weekend's storm.

The fire department has responded to more than 40 structure fires since the storm and about as many carbon monoxide incidents.

Generators have instructions and PSO said you should use them.

"We strongly encourage people to connect their appliances directly to the generator and not to try and connect the generator to their fuse box. That endangers our crews," said Wayne Green, PSO.

Tulsa firefighters responded to 18 carbon monoxide calls on Tuesday and just eight on Wednesday.

As of Thursday evening, they've responded to a dozen. At least one of those had to do with a generator running too close to an open window.

"Ensure that it's not being drawn and that the breeze is not bringing the exhaust back into the residence," said Chief Michael Baker, TFD.

Piles of debris are drying out, creating more fire risk.

"Please be cautious anytime you're using anything such as a lawnmower or anything that may kick a spark," said Chief Baker.

Chief Baker said they also saw a surge in structure fires Wednesday.

"We arrested an arsonist yesterday morning. We had a juvenile fire set yesterday afternoon at about 5:30. And then we had another apartment fire," said Chief Baker.

He said only one of Wednesday's fires near 15th and Lewis had to do with the power outage, but it is making responding more complicated.

Baker said things started to re-energize, but the system wasn't ready.

"It had something called balloon frame construction, so the fire was running from the basement all the way to the top, so it was very challenging. But we did save the property and minimize damage. And the second thing is, as they were working there were getting electric shocks in certain areas of the building," said Chief Baker.

He said be mindful; a little breeze can pick up pieces of debris and drop it onto the danger zone.

"I saw a transformer today that became energized in a midtown home and started a small fire in the backyard," said Chief Baker.

Chief Baker said firefighters responded to six open burns Tuesday, none Wednesday, but that number is back up Thursday. He said please don't try to burn your debris in your backyard.

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