Firefighters Battle 5-Alarm High Rise Fire

A multi-alarm fire broke out at a high-rise apartment complex in southwest Dallas, forcing the evacuation of some elderly residents.

Thick black smoke was billowing from atop the the Indigo Apartments in the 2500 block of Wedglea Drive Wednesday afternoon, but within an hour firefighters appeared to have the blaze under control.

About 10 firefighters could be seen on the roof of the 11-story structure, where the fire appeared to be concentrated. Flames shot up 40 feet into the air, and spread smoke as far as Arlington.

The complex was at one time a senior citizens home and still houses mostly seniors.

Firefighters carried several residents down as many as 11 flights of stairs.

"I think we are all just worried about them," resident Sky McDaniel said. "They are really sweet people, and that they were OK and got out in time."

The Red Cross is assisting the more than 100 people who have been displaced by the fire. It could be several days before they are allowed back into the building because it does not have air conditioning, a Red Cross representative said.

At least two people were taken to local hospitals.

One person seen escorted out of the building was placed on a gurney, but her condition was not immediately available. Another man collapsed in the parking lot from the triple-digit heat.

Investigators said they believe the air-conditioning system may have started the fire.

It's the second fire in four years in the high-rise building. One person was killed in a six-alarm blaze in the same building in 2005.

The fire in what was then called the Wedgwood Apartment Tower was started by unattended food on a stove, investigators said. At the time of the 2005 fire, the building did not have have sprinklers.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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