COLUMBIA, S.C. — Carbon monoxide, missing smoke alarms, charred closets and infestations were among nearly two dozen violations at the Allen Benedict Court Apartments highlighted in a Columbia Fire Department letter to Columbia Housing Authority.
News 19 requested the letter through the Freedom of Information Act.
The letter comes days after two men were found dead in two separate apartments at the complex. There have also been reports of gas leaks throughout the complex.
The code violations include a presence of natural gas; carbon monoxide described as "severe and lethal" detected in several units; missing or outdated smoke alarms; and exposed wires on ceilings where smoke alarms were installed.
Some of the maintenance issues included roach infestations, rodent droppings, "sufficient evidence of stoves leaking gas," damaged ceilings, and sanitation problems.
Part of the letter by Columbia Fire Chief Aubrey Jenkins reads:
"Due to the severity of the noted deficiencies, it has been determined that all buildings at this location are unsafe. The conditions as outlined at Allen-Benedict Court constitute a clear and imminent threat to human life, safety or health in accordance with the International Fire Code section 110.1 and the Property Maintenance Code section 109.1. Therefore, this facility shall be immediately evacuated and all hazardous conditions shall be abated."
The letter also explained that there were 63 apartments with carbon monoxide or natural gas detected.