Investigators working to bring apartments up to code after deadly fire
BATON ROUGE - Fire investigators with the State Fire Marshal and Baton Rouge Fire Department spent Friday looking into the cause of a deadly fire on Carlotta Street near the LSU campus.
The fire killed 37-year-old James Mobley and injured another man Thursday morning. Investigators are also trying to determine if the converted apartment complex was up to code. Multi-family complexes must have at least two exits, tagged fire extinguishers and smoke detectors for each apartment unit.
The Baton Rouge Fire Department inspects those types of apartment buildings annually, but they can't always gain access inside the buildings to do a full inspection. Inspectors then leave a yellow door tag letting landlords know to call them back for an inspection, according to BRFD spokesman Curt Monte.
"You know we certainly have a duty to inspect these buildings. We do our due diligence," he said. "We also believe that these homeowners or these building owners certainly have a duty also to respond to allow us the access to get inside to make sure that these buildings are as safe as can be for anyone that lives there."
Fire investigators took the opportunity to inspect several other apartment complexes in the area that are owned by the same person. The cause of the fire has not been released.