Residents displaced after three-alarm fire at north Houston apartment complex

Reporter Kevin Quinn sent this photo from the scene of the fire.

March 4, 2013 4:04:15 PM PST
The winds across our area Monday played a role in a 3-alarm apartment fire in north Houston. More homes were destroyed because the winds fueled the fire at the Worthing at the Beltway Apartments on Greens Parkway.

Many are still trying to figure out where they will stay now. Fire crews are still on the scene hosing down hot spots.

Those fire crews went into a "defensive" mode several times trying to knock down the flames, which quickly engulfed the south side of the apartment complex starting at around 10:30am. The effort required three alarms, which is about 120 firefighters.

"I got here and went around back to the courtyard and there were smoke tornadoes everywhere," said Jay Evans with the Houston Fire Department.

Authorities say the wind-fueled flames ripped through the apartments on one side of the complex. We talked to many who were only able to get out with the clothes they had on, nothing else.

"I couldn't grab nothing. It happened so fast. I was scared to death. I just grabbed my dog and ran out the house," said resident Tiffany Turney.

Latoya Randolph, another victim, told us, "I'm kinda sad. I have to start over again. I'm just starting over and now I have to start over again."

Evans said everyone was able to get out of the apartment complex. One woman hurt her foot, but didn't require transportation to the hospital.

Investigators still don't know what sparked the fire. They do tell us it appears to have started here at the edge of the complex, likely near a first floor apartment. Beyond that, they just haven't had time to figure it out.

The apartment complex is attempting to find empty apartments for those who were displaced by the fire. That's about 60 families. The Red Cross has opened up a shelter at the Copperfield Church, located at 8350 Highway 6 North, Houston, TX 77095.

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