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Firefighters battling two-alarm fire at SW Houston apartment complex

The fire destroyed 16 units of a southwest Houston apartment complex
Thursday, July 03, 2014
Houston firefighters are battling a two-alarm fire that started out an apartment complex in southwest Houston and injured one firefighter.

The La Mirage Resort apartment complex is located off Briar Forest Drive near Lakeside Estates Drive. Roof-top video shows the flames shooting high.

"I'm still trying to absorb it all. It all happened so fast," resident Carl Mims said.

Mims escaped just in in time with his dog. He called 911 after seeing lighting and then smoke on his apartment roof.

The fire quickly grew to a two-alarm blaze. Ladder trucks were positioned at four corners, and 90 firefighters participated in the firefight.

In all, 16 units in Building 10 were damaged by fire, smoke and water. No residents were injured, but one firefighter was rushed to to Memorial Hermann Hospital.

"We believe it was steam burns to his back," Houston Fire Department Deputy Chief Fernando Herrera said.

Residents are convinced it was lightning that ignited the blaze.

"The wind and and rain did exacerbate the situation," Herrera said.

Huda Sabghatallah and her one-and-a-half-year-old son fear everything in their apartment is gone.

"My son was sleeping. I just take him with a blanket," she said.

Neighbors now helping with what they can; they too were left emotional.

"I can't imagine. They have a child. This is awful," neighbor Lindy Bower said.

The Houston Fire Marshal's Office will be investigating the cause.

Displaced residents will be staying in vacant apartments.
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