Several people escaped an apartment fire Wednesday night after a babysitter and a friend went inside the smoke-filled building to help several children, a firefighter says.
Assistant Fire Chief Eddie Slone said he was told a babysitter and her friend were smoking cigarettes outside the building, at 261 Meadowview Drive, when they saw smoke coming from the basement windows.
They went back inside for the children, he said. However, he never spoke with the babysitter personally so he could not confirm the story.
The six-unit building has two apartments on each floor, including the basement, that share a common hallway, which allows smoke to carry easily throughout the building, Slone said.
“When a fire starts in the basement, it’s usually one of the hottest fires you can fight,” he said.
“It’s like going through a chimney.”
Slone said several people were in the building when the fire broke out around 11 p.m., though he is uncertain of how many were home at the time.
Several people left the scene before firefighters arrived, he said.
Three people were checked for smoke inhalation by EMS at the scene, but no injuries were reported.
The cause of the fire is still under investigation, Slone said.