CAMBRIDGE, Md. (WJZ)–An overnight fire on Maryland’s Eastern Shore sends almost two dozen people to the hospital. The fast-moving flames ripped through an apartment building in Cambridge.
Kai Jackson has more on those tense moments.
For many people trapped inside that burning building the only choice was to jump.
Smoke and fire filled a three-story apartment building late Sunday night on Race Street in Cambridge.
As firefighters battled the flames, residents were forced to escape from the windows.
“I can tell you in 35 years I have never seen people jump out of a building,” said Cambridge fire chief Robert Phillips.
Phillips describes the fearful moments.
“I had five or six people laid out in the alleyway. These people had jumped from second and third floor windows. You struck the concrete, and that was the end of them. They couldn’t move,” he said.
Tyrone Roy saw the fire and one man’s quick actions to help some of those stranded upstairs.
“First thing we saw when we got out here were flames shooting out the window and thick black smoke coming from the roof. And this guy pulled up in a red van, and he was letting people climb from the window on to his van to escape the fire,” Roy said.
Twenty-one residents suffered injuries as they tried to escape, and two firefighters were hurt fighting it.
One man who lives in the building says he’s thankful he made it out alive.
“I’m lucky I’m not injured because there is a lot of other people who aren’t as lucky as I am. I’m scared to think what everyone else had to go through,” said Ryan Phillips.
No injuries suffered in the fire are considered life threatening.
Officials say smoke alarms alerted resident to the blaze.
The building, which has a clothing store on the first floor in addition to the upstairs apartments, was a total loss.