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Calif. firefighters faced challenging roof construction during apartment fire

Sacramento firefighters faced a second roof over a challenging “center hallway” complex in the two-story building


Sacramento Metropolitan Fire Distric/Facebook

By Rosalio Ahumada
The Sacramento Bee

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A maintenance manager rescued a resident Friday morning from a two-alarm fire that burned a Carmichael apartment complex where tenants from 33 apartments were displaced.

The fire was first reported about 9:20 a.m. at the apartment complex in the 5200 block of Arden Way, just east of Fair Oaks Boulevard.

Firefighters arrived at the scene to find the fire burning in a second-floor apartment, according to the Sacramento Metropolitan Fire District.

The apartments are in a center-hallway-style complex, which means all apartment doors lead to an interior hallway. This layout made it challenging for firefighters to get in and out of these apartments, pull in hoses, and have adequate visibility due to the accumulating smoke in those confined spaces, firefighters said.

Crews also struggled with an additional roof that was built over the original roof. Fire officials said flames were able to spread between the roofs, so crews had to use chainsaws to create ventilation in the roofs for the flames and smoke to move out of the building.

Nearly 60 firefighters were at the scene nearly three hours battling the apartment complex fire, along with nine fire engines and five fire trucks., according to Sacramento Metro Fire.

Fire officials said the complex’s maintenance manager found one of the residents down on the ground inside a burning apartment and was able to rescue the tenant, who was taken to a hospital after suffering minor smoke inhalation.

All other occupants in the apartment complex were safely evacuated. Fire officials said residents from 33 apartments have been temporarily displaced, and Red Cross officials were called to the scene to assist them.

Firefighters got the blaze under control and then extinguished the smoldering fire in the building, fire officials said. The cause of the fire remained under investigation.

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