CROSS LANES, WV (WOWK) — Some families won’t be spending Easter morning at home after fires spread through their apartments near 40th Street just after noon Saturday on Cross Lanes Drive.
“There was no time. I grabbed my phone, my keys and got out of there, then I started knocking on doors,” said Erica Dukes, who lives next door to the apartment where the fire appears to have started.
Dukes was about to work in her apartment when she heard something out of the ordinary.
“We just heard a big boom. I just thought maybe something from him fell upstairs. But then I came to look outside and it was just smoke. Then the upstairs window air conditioner had just blown out the window and the next thing you know there was flames,” Dukes said. “So we just got out of there.”
People in the community quickly saw what was happening and came to make sure everyone was safe.
“I actually live just down the road near Cold Spot and I hear a bunch of fire engines, someone told me an apartment complex here was on fire and I a friend here,” explained community member Erica Beary. “It was my friend’s apartment. It’s a total loss. »
Firefighters from several neighboring towns came to help prevent the fire from spreading. Even with the extensive damage, many are thankful things didn’t get worse.
“I’m just glad she wasn’t there,” Beary said of her friend. “She told me she had literally just left her apartment when it caught fire and we’re glad she wasn’t there.”
While Erica Dukes had to leave quickly to alert her neighbors all the time, she worried about her cat Charlie, who also made it out safe and sound.
“I’m happy. I mean, I’m happy that no body was harmed,” she said. “Everyone is out. But I mean things can be replaced but not people and I am very close to my pet, I had him for 12 years and he couldn’t be replaced either.
The American Red Cross was also on hand to help these families. It is still not known exactly what started the fire.