Investigation into apartment fire cause could takes days

By Marisela Burgos - bio | email

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - A man remains in critical condition at the hospital with severe burns after a fire erupted in his apartment building.

Louisville Fire and Rescue Chief Greg Frederick said the man lived in the apartment above the apartment where the fire started. Firefighters responded around 2:45 a.m. April 14 to Colonial Oaks Apartments off Southside Drive in South Louisville.

Seven other people were taken to hospitals with non-life threatening injuries.

At this time, officials do not know the cause of the fire, but they do know the fire started on the first floor. Chief Frederick said a person who lives in the apartment told them it may have started on the sofa and spread to the curtains. At least 12 apartments have some sort of damage.

According to witnesses, at one point parents living on the second floor tossed their 3-year-old to people waiting below to escape the flames and smoke before jumping the distance themselves. Another man broke a window to pull his disabled neighbor to safety. Many neighbors helped alert one another.

"I heard something like a bell and I thought it was the people upstairs. I said 'why don't you all cut that bell off.' By the time I said that, they started knocking," said Mary Garvin, who lives in the building next to the one where the fire sparked. "I didn't get the worst of it, you know. God is good."

"The thing is what you do in your apartment not only affects you, but everyone that's around you," Chief Frederick said.

The American Red Cross is helping 11 families who were displaced by the fire by providing food and clothing.

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