FARMVILLE, N.C (WNCT) – Nine apartments caught fire in Farmville Tuesday night, all of them a total loss.
It happened around 5:30 at the Tanglewood Apartments and took nearly 5 hours to put out.
Broken doors, broken windows and caution tape is what’s left after a fire ripped through the apartment complex.
“Boom, boom, and I thought it was a car accident,” said Sierra Hines, a neighbor describing what she heard. Hines never expected to walk out her back door and see flames coming from the apartments beside her. “When the firefighters came out, they had to go down in the roof. The wind started blowing and that’s when the flames went all of the way down, smoke. Once they had to go in the roof and smoke and it just burned for hours and hours.”
Many of the residents came back Wednesday afternoon to collect some belongings like photos and toys.
“It’s just sad,” said Hines. “That’s the only feeling I have is sad.”
Nineteen people were displaced. Many of them are being assisted by the Red Cross.
Police said the fire started from a lit cigarette and was accidental.
During the fire, there were communication issues between departments. The Pitt County radio system had a small glitch making crews change to a different channel to communicate.
Interim Emergency Management Director Allan Everett said he’s working with the manufacturer to find a solution to the issue.
Farmville Apartment Complex Fire