EAST ALTON - East Alton Fire Department was called to a report Monday morning of a large cloud of black smoke from a fire and when they arrived, a man who is known as part of the homeless population had a fire going with a large pile of debris.

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The fire was quickly extinguished, East Alton Fire Chief Tim Quigley said.

Chief Quigley said prior to this call they were needed at a serious EMS call and the problem with these types of situations is it takes them away from necessary runs that often result in lives being saved.

“I have been here three years, and we have had about a dozen of these calls,” he said. “It does often take us away from important EMS runs.”

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