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MPD must meet fire codes by end of the month

By By Marianne Todd/The Meridian Star
Dec. 5, 2001
Meridian's fire chief said Tuesday that the Police Department has until the end of December to bring its Sixth Street headquarters up to city fire code standards.
Meanwhile, the city is looking at two possible sites to renovate for a new police headquarters. City spokesman Maureen Lofton declined to name the sites, saying it's too early in the process.
Lofton said city leaders are discussing the financial possibilities of renovating an existing building "and whether that's really the best place for the police department and whether it's the best use of an existing structure."
The 26-year-old MPD headquarters failed to meet fire inspection codes and was cited for 66 violations during its annual inspection in April.
The building failed a follow-up inspection in August, when it was cited for 34 violations. Another follow-up inspection in October mirrored the August inspection.
Fire code violations
Nearly half of the fire code violations involved missing, damaged or cracked ceiling tiles.
Acting Police Chief Benny DuBose said after the October inspection that the tiles are no longer made and a new ceiling is needed. MPD workers have since cut and replaced damaged or missing ceiling tiles.
Employees who attempted to repair sagging ceiling tiles in the courtroom, where the city council meets, apparently failed because the new tiles are bulging from the ceiling.
A hardened yellow glue remains on bare floors where workers removed carpet. DuBose said the floors will likely be covered with linoleum.
No plans for leak
DuBose said he is not sure if a leakage problem in the Police Department building is because of a flat roof or a busted pipe.
Fire Chief Bunky Partridge said the roof's problem will have to be remedied: "Now that I know about it, I won't send my firefighters up there on the roof to fight fire."
Partridge said the main problem with the MPD headquarters was with the cracked and stained ceiling tiles.
Marianne Todd is a staff writer for The Meridian Star. Call her at 693-1551, ext. 3236, or e-mail her at mtodd@themeridianstar.com

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