DETROIT (WWJ) – Arson investigators are looking for answers after a fire set on mattresses in a dumpster spread to a neighboring apartment building, forcing its evacuation.
The fire happened Tuesday morning at 50-unit apartment building at Toledo and Lansing streets in Detroit’s southwest side.
Investigators say the fire started outside in the alleyway and spread to a main floor apartment unit. Firefighters quickly responded and were able to contain the fire to one unit. No injuries were reported.
Patricia Entz, wearing an oxygen tank, was able to escape the flames and perhaps a worse fate, but she lost everything expect her dogs and cats in the fire.
“All I seen was a bunch of fire coming through the back window and then my daughter, cousin and her daughter got me and the two animals out,” she said.
Patty Cooper, whose family lives in the building, said she got a call around 6 a.m. and all she could hear was screaming and chaos as her family tried to escape the flames. That’s when she jumped in her car and drove straight over.
“When I noticed she didn’t have her cats out, we ran back in there and I was screaming for the fireman ‘Please, get the cats! Get the cats!’ and he got the cats out. I couldn’t breathe but I got God on my side,” she said.
Police on the scene were questioning a person who was reportedly seen in the area earlier by tenants. An investigation is ongoing.