this fire

this fire

Cat Jumps From Apartment Fire VIDEO and loses 1 of nine lives

8h ago
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Cat jumps to safety at Celebration apartment fire CELEBRATION -- The cleanup continues after a massive two-alarm fire ravaged an apartment building in Osceola County. Investigators said lightning likely started the fire around 3 p.m. Tuesday. Jim Cooke, who lives nearby, said he heard the strike. "All the sudden I was watching TV and I smelled smoke. I walked outside and I couldn't believe what I saw," Cooke said. "You know, I was in the field artillery and this was louder than any shell I've ever heard. It was really a crash." Cooke captured a cat jumping out of a third-story window as crews from four different departments fought to extinguish the flames. The cat then ran away. One year old Charley Jasper amazingly made her escape out of the burning apartment complex. The cat looks black in the video, but that's just because she was covered in soot from the fire. "We are thankful the cat just had burnt paws and minor scratches," Josue Alicea said. The cat also had an injury to her jaw, according to Alicea. Alicea was grateful his roommate's kitty survived the fire, but devastated that he and many of his neighbors lost everything. "I have family here and they can help out, but it's the kids," he said. "They don't know what is going on. They don't understand," Allison Iskowitz also lost everything in the fire. "I had a lot of stuff that my dad gave me," Iskowitz said. "He passed away when I was 8." The fire sparked up around 3 o'clock Tuesday afternoon while storms pounded the area. Firefighters think lightning is to blame, especially after witness accounts. "I was in the field artillery and this was louder than any shell I've ever heard. It was really a crash," said Cooke. Wednesday, crews worked to clean up the mess and survey the devastation. Twenty-four units in this brand new complex were extremely damaged. "We just moved here and we just got done buying all new things," said Alicea. Luckily no one was hurt in this fire. "It just eventually started to look like a war zone," said Andrea Moore, a resident. "The smoke was so heavy you couldn't even see the building." Crews monitored the scene overnight for hot spots. A resident who lives on the third floor praised two of the groundskeepers. She said the duo was banging on doors and getting pets out of the complex. The three-story, 24-unit building is likely a total loss, said Deputy Chief Danny McAvoy with Osceola County Fire Rescue. The State Fire Marshal's Office is investigating. The American Red Cross is helping displaced residents. Cat survives 3-story jump from building fire in Celebration; Residents collect belongings CELEBRATION, Fla. — Several residents are trying to salvage their belongings Wednesday, following a fire that ripped through their building at the Evander Square at Celebration apartments Tuesday afternoon. Fire officials said that the blaze started in the attic, and then spread throughout the 24-unit building. The building has almost completely collapsed on the inside, and residents are salvaging what they can with hard hats and with the help of a salvage crew. A cat managed to jump from the third story window to escape the flames, and a witness caught it on video. In the video, the cat seems to try to climb down the wall, but then simply falls to the ground, and then can be seen running across the parking lot. "So, it jumped out of the third-floor window, landed on the cement and just ran away. I mean, it didn't bounce or anything," said fire victim Jim Cooke. People inside the building and the cat were in real danger, officials said. The cat may have jumped out just in time because the fire caused the roof of the building to collapse and the debris fell down to the first floor. Residents said they were stunned as they gathered what was left of their belongings. The fire started from a lightning strike during a huge storm Tuesday. However, the fire did not spark until about 20 minutes after the str...