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3 injured in fire in Chicago public housing high-rise

Chicago firefighters responded to a fire on the fourth floor of a high-rise for seniors

By Ilana Arougheti
Chicago Tribune

CHICAGO — Chicago firefighters responded Tuesday evening to a 2-alarm fire at a public housing building in Uptown.

The fire started in a 4th-floor unit at the Ella Flagg Young Apartments at 4645 N. Sheridan Rd. , according to the fire department. At least three people were removed from the scene.

Firefighters put the fire out around 6 p.m. At least 15 fire trucks and three advance support units were outside the building by 6:15 p.m. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.

The Ella Flagg Young Apartments are owned by the Chicago Housing Authority and house senior citizens 62 and older.

Verneise Taylor called 911 from the 11th floor when she smelled smoke while doing laundry.

“I thought it was my machine,” Taylor told the Chicago Tribune. “It was coming from the elevator, so I called the fire department.”

Unable to access the elevator, Taylor climbed down to the 4th floor, where she was told to take an alternate route out of the building. “I couldn’t go nowhere,” Taylor said. “They told me to go across.”

On her way out, Taylor said she witnessed a firefighter attempting to resuscitate a woman. A caregiver who works in the building, Taylor was unable to find her client as the fire was extinguished.

“I didn’t think he’d go (out) without telling me,” Taylor said.

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