Tallahassee Fire Causes One Million in Damages, 23 People Displaced

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Tallahassee, FL - "Well I just so happened to wake up and to my neighbor. I heard her on the phone outside calling the fire department," said Aniya Johnson.

Aniya woke up at 4:30 a.m. Tuesday morning at her apartment to one of many people's biggest fears.

"It seemed like her patio was engulfed in flames so I ran back upstairs, grabbed some stuff and I realized I could just pull the fire alarm and hopefully everyone will just come out the building."

"Nobody seemed to hear the fire alarm. Everybody was still kind of asleep, so I was like wow nobody's running out the building so I was like let me run back upstairs and start banging on doors."

Firefighters say if it wasn't for Johnson's quick actions, this fire could have been a lot worse.

"We really credit [Aniya Johnson] for getting around to the different apartments and waking some of the residents up and telling them about the fire."

When we asked her if she was brave in doing what she did, Aniya just shrugged.

"I was just doing, you know, in case of fire pull the alarm."

Eric Johnson says he was awakened just after 4:00 Tuesday morning to someone screaming, fire.

He says, "Once I got out of the door, it was pure madness. It was probably 20-foot flames shooting out of the attic. It looked like two apartments were fully engulfed. It was pretty bad."

By the time Tallahassee firefighters made it to Plantations at Pine Lake Apartments on Halstead Boulevard, building 9 was fully engulfed in flames.

Johnson says, "My first thought was, I'm about to lose everything I worked for; sadness; anger. But, then reality sets in and you know what really matters in life."

Johnson's wife got emotional thinking about how their neighbor woke them and their three-year-old son and nine-year-old daughter up.

She says, "She physically banged on every door, every door to get us out of there -- because of... "

Because of a cigarette on the porch of a bottom level apartment. Firefighters say the cigarette wasn't put out properly.

Terri Richardson lives in one of the apartment buildings across from building 9. She says, "I thought I was dreaming because we don't ever turn the TV off. I thought maybe I was dreaming and woke up to a movie. So, it was very frightening"

There were no injuries reported.

Red Cross Release: Red Cross Responds to an Apartment Fire

Tallahassee, FL - November 27, 2012 - The American Red Cross Capital Area Chapter responded to the Plantations at Pine Lake Apartments early this morning with 23 residents displaced.

Red Cross caseworkers responded at 6:30am and have been working with clients displaced by the fire. The Red Cross plans to place the clients in Hotels and provide other emergency assistance as needed.

“This has already been a very busy year for Red Cross assistance to local fires and we see this trend continuing throughout the colder months”, said Dan Samborn, CEO for the American Red Cross Capital Area Chapter.

People can send donations to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Consider making a donation today by visiting www.tallyredcross.org , calling 850-878-6080. Contributions may also be sent to your local Red Cross chapter, 1115 Easterwood Drive, Tallahassee, FL 32311. Contributions enable the Red Cross to prepare for and provide shelter, food, emotional support and other assistance in response to disasters.

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation's blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.tallyredcross.org or join our blog at http:/cacarc.wordpress.com.

Tallahassee, FL - November 27, 2012 - The Red Cross is assisting 23 occupants who were displaced as a result of the fire. The two story apartment building contained 16 apartment units, 8 of which are effected by fire and/or water damage. 3 of those units were heavily damaged by fire. Florida State Fire Marshal and ATF and Explosives on scene now investigating the cause of the fire. TPD assisted on scene with evacuation as well. Power has been turned off to the building and not expected to be restored today. Early damages are estimated at $1,000,000. No injuries reported at the scene.

Tallahassee, FL - November 27, 2012 - According to Mike Bellamy with the Tallahassee Fire Department, a cigarette was the cause of the fire. It was left out on the porch and was improperly extinguished.

Tallahassee, FL - November 27, 2012 - 7:30am - A fire broke out earlier this morning at Plantations at Pine Lake Apartment Townhomes in Tallahassee.

Officials have evacuated everyone from the building 9, where the fire started.

The call to the Tallahassee Fire Department came in at just after 4:30 this morning and the fire department says part of the building was in flames when they arrived.

We do not know the cause of the fire at this time. WCTV will keep you posted as information becomes available.

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