Apartment house fire displaces 17 Only 2 at home, and both get out

September 14, 1993|By Michael James | Michael James,Staff Writer

Seventeen people were forced out of their homes last night when a two-alarm fire swept through an apartment building at the Town & Country complex in Ellicott City, county fire officials said.

Sixty firefighters were called to 8745 Town & Country Blvd. about 6:10 p.m. and found the blaze in a ground-floor vacant apartment, said Battalion Chief Donald R. Howell of the fire and rescue service.

The building houses six apartments where a total of 17 people reside, although only two were home when the fire started, Chief Howell said. Both were able to escape without injury, he said.

"It [the fire] broke out through the sliding glass doors of the vacant apartment and leap-frogged up the balcony to the second and third floors," Chief Howell said.

Three of the six apartments were damaged by fire, while the other three were damaged by smoke, Chief Howell said.

About 60 firefighters and 26 pieces of equipment from the Howard and Baltimore counties helped bring the blaze under control at 6:50 p.m. One firefighter, whose name was not available, was taken to Howard County General Hospital with a minor injury to one of his knees. He was expected to be treated and released, Chief Howell said.

The Red Cross and a county fire department human services officer were assisting the residents in finding alternative housing last night, Chief Howell said.

An investigator from the state fire marshal's office was at the scene to try to determine the reason for the blaze, which caused property damage estimated at $250,000.

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