NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) - A fire that broke out at a three-story apartment building in Northwest Miami-Dade left one of the units charred and left a dozen people without a place to call home.
Several Miami-Dade Fire Rescue units responded to the scene of the blaze in the area of Northwest 14th Avenue and 95th Street, just before 3:15 a.m., Saturday.
Video captured firefighters breaking glass as plumes of dark smoke shot through a window.
“It could have been a whole lot worse had we not responded promptly,” said MDFR Firefighter Megan Todaro.
The first floor of the structure became completely engulfed in flames.
Resident Akeem Jimenez said he heard a loud noise.
:All I heard was a boom, so me and my uncle rushed downstairs to see what was going on,” he said.
When they got downstairs, Jimenez said, they found a neighbors struggling with an electric scooter.
“It was like sparking, and then, as soon as he tried to push it out the door, it caught flames,” he said.
The fire spread quickly, sending black smoke into nearby apartments and destroying a first-floor unit.
“The homeowner was able to evacuate safely,” said Todoro.
But everything he owns was consumed by the flames. Inside the unit, nothing was left but a charred mess.
Meanwhile, neighbors ran up and down the halls and banged on doors to wake people up.
“Everybody here could have been dead, if somebody didn’t [alert] us of what was going on,” said resident Kenya Hill.
“I got my sisters upstairs and all of that, and me and [another relative] had to get them all out, because they were all asleep, too, at the same time,” said resident Joseph Stevens.
“I heard like a little kid, he was like, ‘Ahhh!’ so I ran up there, opened the door, and I was like, ‘Come on, come on, come on!'” said Jimenez.
But it’s what residents did not hear that, they said, made the fire even more dangerous.
“No smoke alarms went off, not one, and that’s a problem. That is a major problem,” said a resident.
Saturday afternoon, 7News cameras showed crews boarding up windows.
The American Red Cross stepped in to help the 12 people who were impacted, including two children.
Residents said they would like those smoke detectors working immediately.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation.
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