Firefighters File Unfair Labor Practice Charge

Local 22 of the Philadelphia firefighters union has filed an unfair labor practice charge against the city, in an effort to get audio recordings and written reports from a Kensington warehouse fire that killed two firefighters in a wall collapse in April.

The union has maintained that a "collapse zone" was never established around the building. If one had been set up  - preventing firefighters from entering an area one and a half times the height of the building's walls - then Lt. Robert Neary and Firefighter Daniel Sweeney would not have been killed, the union has said.

The union said Tuesday that the recordings and reports are necessary to investigate a possible greivance. The city has not responded to a request for the material made six weeks ago, the union said.

"They continue to stonewall us and we’re no longer willing to play their childish games," said Local 22 President Bill Gault. "Clearly, the Nutter administration has something to hide, or they would have turned over the information weeks ago."

District Attorney Seth Williams also said in the wake of the fire that he would impanel a grand jury to investigate the circumstances surrounding the fire, and it's likely the requested evidence would be part of the grand jury proceedings.

The unfair labor practice charge would be heard before the Pennsylvania Labor Relations Board.

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