Investigators say candle started Highlands apartment fire - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Investigators say candle started Highlands apartment fire

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Fire burns through a Cherokee Road apartment Sunday night.  (Photo credit:  Matt Johnson) Fire burns through a Cherokee Road apartment Sunday night. (Photo credit: Matt Johnson)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - More than a dozen people were forced out of their home after a fire broke out in a Highlands apartment building. It happened just after 10 p.m. Sunday on Cherokee Road near Grinstead Drive.

Fire officials say this was an accidental fire caused by an unattended candle. It all started in an unit on the second floor and quickly spread to the rest of the building.

"I was walking down Cherokee and that's when I saw the smoke and flames were already in the third floor just shooting out," said Bart Crowder who lives next door. 

In no time flames quickly engulfed the third floor. "We immediately did searches all the occupants were out of the building," said Chief Gregory Frederick, Louisville Fire and Rescue.

It took crews about 35 minutes to get the flames under control, but it wasn't the easiest to put out, they even called in two extra units to help.

"We had some difficulty in the fire fight because of the third which had a lot of fire involvement, but doesn't actually have any access to it, so the only access was off of ladders into windows," said Frederick. 

14 people lived in the building in five different units, but in the two of the units the residents were not home. One person was taken by EMS and treated for smoke inhalation, but has been released. There were no other injuries reported and neighbors say they are just glad everyone was able to get out safe. 

"It was a bit of shock, considering we have just moved in a week ago and it was weird to see that next door," said Crowder.

All 14 people that were displaced are staying with family. Fire officials say the building is not a total loss, but there is a lot of work ahead.   

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