ALIQUIPPA (KDKA) — A fire forced dozens of residents to evacuate from their apartment complex in Beaver County over the weekend.
Firefighters were called to the Eleanor Roosevelt Apartments in the 700-block of Sheffield Avenue in Aliquippa around 11 a.m. Sunday.
Officials say no injuries were reported as a result of the fire, but about 75 people – some elderly – were displaced.
“I was in my apartment; I heard it on my scanner before the alarms even went off and by the time I got my clothes on, the police was saying get out of the building ‘cause, you know, it was that fast,” said one resident. “You’d choke soon as you’d get out in the hall, the smoke was that thick. So, I was right above it.”
Many of the residents are staying with either family or friends. The Red Cross has also set up an emergency shelter at the Hopewell Junior High School.
Officials with the Red Cross say they will reevaluate the situation Monday and other arrangements may be made for those who were displaced. They say emergency shelters are set up in cases of fires at complexes like the Eleanor Roosevelt Apartments because of the number of people involved.
Crews were able to keep the flames contained to a single room on the ninth floor, but there’s damage from the building’s sprinkler system.
“Stand in line and see what we could salvage, but I looked across the hall and they said basically – I have nothing, I’m homeless. I don’t know how to accept that,” another resident added. “It’s really hard to accept that. All I have is what you see.”
So far, there’s no word on a possible cause for the fire.
A state police fire marshal has been called in to investigate.