‘There were big, big flames’: Neighbor reacts after Richmond apartment fire displaces several residents

Richmond

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Residents of multiple units have been forced out after an apartment fire in The Fan overnight.

According to the Richmond Fire Department, crews responded to 102 N. Harvie Street just after 11 p.m. for the report of an apartment fire. Once crews arrived, they found heavy smoke and flames coming from the roof.

Richmond fire said there was an orange glow above the building.

Warren Aldrich lives a few doors down and was in bed reading when he smelt the smoke. He walked outside and eventually saw flames shooting from the back of the building. He said fire trucks flooded the street.

“That was pretty intense. I mean, there were big, big flames. And they brought the hoses up there and you could hear it, putting the fire out,” Aldrich said. “And they doused it and it sprang back and they doused it again and it was over.”

Crews were able to put out the fire they found in the second floor, and the fire was marked under control just after 12:30 a.m. They chased hot spots for several hours before the building was secure.

Everyone inside was able to make it out safely. According to the department, the occupants of the units have been displaced but did not need the help of Red Cross.

Aldrich said he helped a neighbor helped a policeman straighten out a fire hose. He said they saw firefighters break out the top window to get inside. Glass is still shattered on the ground.

Investigators believe the fire started in the kitchen, near the stove. Richmond Fire said it spread to nearby combustibles, which progressed through HVAC ducts and into the wall and ceiling.

The building was condemned.

This is a developing story.

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