Phoenix Fire Department loses keys for businesses

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

PHOENIX (AP) — The Phoenix Fire Department can't account for hundreds of keys for lock boxes that allow firefighters to enter thousands of businesses and other locations when they're closed to battle blazes.

Deputy Chief David Carter on Monday blamed poor record keeping over the past 15 years for the missing 850 keys but said there's no indication they have been used for criminal purposes.

The Fire Department keeps the keys in engines and other vehicles and gives them to certain personnel so they don't have to break into a building to gain entry.

Carter says the department will replace the mechanisms of the 9,000 lock boxes at establishments using the system in Phoenix. A department spokeswoman says Phoenix set aside $50,000 for the work.

KPNX-TV initially reported Monday that the keys were missing.