1 hospitalized after Coral Springs apartment building catches fire; 3 displaced

CORAL SPRINGS, FLA. (WSVN) - Rescue crews took one person to the hospital after a fifth-floor unit at a Coral Springs apartment building burst into flames.

Coral Springs-Parkland Fire units responded to the building, located off Riverside Drive, just after 7 p.m. Sunday.

Video tweeted out by officials captured massive flames and heavy smoke shooting from the roof.

“Pieces of the roof were falling off,” said a resident.

Firefighters battled the massive blaze that destroyed a home and sent a victim to the emergency room.

“One person was taken to the hospital with smoke inhalation,” said Coral Springs-Parkland Fire Division Chief Mike Moser.

Nearby residents said the flames were so big they had no choice but to run.

“I look outside my window, and I see people running,” said resident Andres Arias.

One neighbor, Tatiana Parra, said some of the other neighbors tried to use their own fire extinguishers to stop the fire, but the blaze was too powerful.

“It was too much,” Parra added.

Parra was just getting home when the fire started.

“I was like, ‘Oh my God,’ but the alarm wasn’t even sounding,” she told 7News. “Everybody was starting to scream. They were pounding on every door as they went along. There was a couple of guys that were doing a lot of the stuff before the fire department and the police came around.”

Neighbors like Arias were glad people were going door-by-door alerting people.

“First thing I thought was grab my keys and my wallet, and I opened the door, and someone said to me, ‘Just run. There’s a fire,'” said Arias.

After a few hours, crews were able to contain the fire.

Once the fire was out, everyone was allowed back in at the end of the night.

Officials said the American Red Cross is providing short-term housing to the three people who lived in the apartment.

As the investigation into what sparked the flames continues, one resident said he’s grateful someone’s quick thinking saved his life.

“I’m thankful I woke up when someone was banging on my door because I was asleep, and I don’t know what would have happened if I was asleep,” he said.

Officials said at least two other units may have sustained damage.

“Anything four and below is good, except the fifth floor had to wait a little longer,” Parra said.

The State Fire Marshal has since taken over the investigation.

The cause of the fire has not yet been determined.

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