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Fire Marshal Grinch Shuts Down Treehouse

Local Tourist Attraction Draws Thousands of Visitors

FOR MORE THAN FIFTEEN YEARS, Horace Burgess has been building what he claims is the world's largest treehouse near Crossville, Tennessee. 

Even Firegeezer reported on this remarkable structure nearly three years ago when we wrote in part:

That’s probably a safe claim to make. It’s hard to imagine more than one treehouse that is 97 feet high. The labors of Horace Burgess were spent over 14 years using nothing but scrap lumber and stray pieces found laying around.  He did buy the nails, though….over a quarter-million of them, and he now has a 10-story structure anchored around a still-living white oak tree that is approx. 80 ft. high and has a 12-ft. diameter trunk. There are six other smaller oaks that act as natural pillars and support the sprawling 10,000 sq. ft. building.

Read our story from July, 2010 HERE.  We have more photos and a video visit to the unique attraction.

But the whole operation is at a standstill today following an inspection last summer by the state fire marshal office who were upset to find this unapprovede structure in the woods that actually permitted visitors to climb the stairs and observe the interior.  In their violation notice, the FM complained about:

…. eight offenses including; exceeding allowable height by sixty feet, uneven decking and steps, fall hazards resulting from no guardrails, no obvious exit signs, and no fire alarm, sprinkler system or fire extinguisher.

According to the state's letter Burgess must hire a state certified architect or engineer to help get the tree house up to code if he wants to reopen.

Puzzlingly though, instead of just closing the structure to visits, the FMO ordered the entire propery padlocked and closed even to gawkers.  Burgess is willing to attempt to comply, but he complains that there are no applicable codes for treehouses.

Read this latest twist in the Crossville treehouse saga from WBIR-TV  HERE.

 

Currently the attraction is still closed to visitors.

Hat tip:  Mark D.

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Brian Haggerty

    Oh who gives a crap about the guys tree house. There is nothing more annoying than officials that got to stick their nose into something as dumb as this. Really? Sprinklers. Meet fire codes? WTF. Find some real places to inspect. Bet this was started by some as**ole filing a dumb ass complaint. So sad this is a real concern for someone. Jeez. Society is getting really dumb.