Investigators: Maintenance worker accidentally started apartment fire

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Several families and their children were displaced after a fire heavily damaged a Dallas apartment building Friday afternoon.

Dallas Fire-Rescue crews were called out at 12:39 p.m. for a fire at the Lake June Village Apartments, located in the 1200 block of North Masters Drive. Several dozen firefighters were called out to keep it from spreading.

Thankfully no one was hurt, but 18 people including several children are without a home. Some firefighters remained on scene to keep an eye out for any hotspots.

A resident who called 911 reported smelling smoke coming from the attic. Once firefighters arrived on scene, smoke and flames were coming out of the roof. The fire quickly grew to 3-alarms prompting firefighters to take a defensive posture.

A couple of residents who were asleep inside the building credit an alert maintenance man with saving their lives.

“Me and my kids were in there asleep, and we smelled smoke,” recalled Terry Boyd. “And after we were smelling smoke, everybody was banging on my door grabbing us telling us, ‘Your apartment’s on fire! Get out!”

“I grabbed my son. He was asleep naked. I just put on my socks, my shoes and just ran out the house,” said Ashley Flores. “As soon as we came out, the whole roof was black. The AC units on the top were coming out with black smoke. We got out just in time.”

Dallas Fire-Rescue says it took help from some 70 firefighters to put the fire out and used ladders to douse the flames from above. However, the building is a total loss.

“It’s a race against time to try to suppress the fire as much as you can and to leave something for the investigators to actually conduct an investigation,” said Dallas Fire-Rescue Deputy Chief Eric Beal.

The 18 people who were displaced are being assisted by management at the apartment complex and the American Red Cross.

Fire investigators say a maintenance worker accidentally ignited combustibles within the wall of a second-floor unit while doing some “hot work.” The flames went up the walls and into the attic.

No injuries were reported.