Apartment complex in Jerome catches on fire

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JEROME, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) - The Jerome City Fire Department responded to a fire at an apartment complex a little after 9 p.m. on Oct. 21 on Main Street and Fillmore Street.

It was a rainy night and residents at the complex were in for a shock before going to bed.

Resident Beverly Hiner just turned on her heating pad and was settling into bed while a nearby unit caught on fire.

"Someone knocked on the door real loud and I answered the door and it was a police lady," Hiner continued, "She said that an apartment was on fire and I had to get out and was like 'what?'"

Officials evacuated all nearby residents.

"It was engulfed with smoke, a lot of smoke and it was coming toward this direction, but I didn't know how bad it was," she recalled.

The American Red Cross was called out to assist those residents as well.

"When we got up to the area and I met with the fire chief, he took us to seven people who were affected by this fire," said Diana Ochsner, disaster action team coordinator for south central Idaho American Red Cross.

Eight units connect in one and only seven people were home at the time.

"The way they're set up the structure that started on fire shared an attic with another apartmentm, which kept the others on both sides relatively safe," said Ochsner.

However, details of how the fire started are not confirmed yet, but Officer Sam Roach, of the Jerome Police Department, said it could possibly be from electrical wires burning.

"One was more heavily damaged, when I left, than the other," Ochsner continued, "Obviously there was flame damage, there was water damage and smoke damage."

Two elderly residents now displaced from the fire received help from the Red Cross.

"Our goal is to get people into safe sheltering, help to replace clothing and food on an immediate basis," she said.

It was a shock for the neighbors.

"I just hope everything works out for everybody," said Hiner.

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