All photos by Steve Neavling.
By Steve Neavling
Motor City Muckraker
For the past three years,
Motor City Muckraker photographed fires in Detroit as part of a project to reveal the widespread damage caused by the city’s arson epidemic.
Time and time again, we saw firefighters struggling with broken equipment and hydrants as fires consumed home after home. Even in the face of dramatic budget cuts, Detroit’s firefighters never relented.
10,000 fires broke out in houses, apartments, schools, churches, businesses and other buildings since 2013.
Memorial at the site of a deadly car fire at Carstens Elementary School.
Neighbors watched as a fire spread to four houses in southwest Detroit.
A firefighter takes a quick breather after flames tore through two homes on the east side.
A fire engine and chief vehicle at sunset.
A firefighter at an apartment fire on W. Chicago.
Detroit’s fireboat, the Curtis Randolph, on the Detroit River.
Engine 33’s headquarters, where murdered firefighter David Madrigal often worked.
Firefighters saved an occupied house from catching fire.
A medic carries a rescued toddler who was injured on Marcus Street on the east side.
Firefighters battled a fire in frigid conditions.
Several houses were destroyed by a fire on Otis Street.
Dante Brown helped save the lives of two children and a mother.
This abandoned apartment on the west side was set on fire by scrappers, who had planned to return to retrieve metal.
The remains of a burned Heidelberg Project house.
This house on the west side stood no chance with a faulty hydrant.
The historic First Unitarian on Woodward burned to the ground.
The view from Eminem’s childhood bedroom after the house was gutted by a fire in 2013.
Detroit’s understaffed Fire Department makes life more difficult for firefighters.
Firefighters routinely struggle with water pressure.
Three houses were leveled and one destroyed in a fire on Delta Street.
Steve Neavling lives and works in Detroit as an investigative journalist. His stories have uncovered corruption, led to arrests and reforms and prompted FBI investigations.