Thirty-Nine Code Violations in Building Where Seven Chicago Firefighters Hurt

The building at 1700-08 W. Estes Ave. has been inspected nine times over the past 10 years by the city and was cited for 39 violations during those visits. That includes three times since 2012 where investigators couldn’t gain entry to the building in order to make sure smoke detectors worked properly, reports

Chicago Fire Department Commissioner Jose Santiago said one firefighter Monday injured his shoulder after a set of stairs collapsed while crews were making their way to the third floor of the building.

In January 2010, the building was cited for failure “to maintain interior stairway system in safe condition and sound repair” because pickets were missing from the front staircase handrails.

Six other firefighters were injured in mostly ice-related incidents, and later Streets and Sanitation workers thickly salted the intersection of Paulina and Estes.

The building is registered to Cameel Halim, the agent for CH Ventures, LLC and Wilmette Real Estate & Management, LLC. A woman who answered a phone number registered to CH Ventures, LLC (and is also listed outside the apartment building) declined to comment on the fire.

Court records show Halim and his various real estate corporations have been sued dozens of times in Cook County civil and chancery courts in the past 24 years, including by the city of Chicago for building and environmental violations.

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