WILMINGTON, N.C. (WECT) – A man is recovering in the hospital and 10 others are thankful to have made it out of a massive apartment fire Sunday night.
That man had to be rescued from his second-story apartment. He’s in the hospital and is expected to be okay. All 11 residents are now working with the Red Cross in hopes of moving forward. That help could mean booking a couple of nights in a hotel or buying new clothes and other necessities after losing everything they have in the fire.
“We’re going to help them make those decisions, help them prioritize and also, try to connect them with additional resources in the community,” said Cally Edwards with the American Red Cross. “The Red Cross can’t do it all. It is really a village effort.”
As terrifying as it is to narrowly escape a fire, the trauma doesn’t stop there. Many victims in this situation spend the days afterward coming to terms with the immense loss of all their possessions.
“For many of these folks who were affected yesterday, they never thought it could happen to them,” said Edwards. “That is a lot for the heart and the head to comprehend. Our disaster mental health volunteers and also our disaster spiritual volunteers are available to help talk with them about those emotional needs and what they might be going through during this crisis.”
Neighbors say they’re horrified by the devastating fire and how quickly it spread. Despite being contained to one building, the apartment building next door suffered some damage to its siding.
This isn’t the first time the Mill Creek Apartment complex has dealt with a devastating fire. In 2018, a pet died in a fire and several people were displaced.
The New Hanover County Fire Marshals Office determined Sunday’s fire was accidental and likely caused by improperly discarded smoking materials.
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