Fire forces 27 people from their homes

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Fire ripped through a Henrico County apartment building at lunch time on Tuesday.

It forced dozens of people from their homes and injured two firefighters.

The blaze broke out at the Copper Mill apartments near Mayland Drive and Parham Road. Witnesses say they smelled smoke before they spotted flames.

Thick, black clouds billowed from a second floor apartment.

Two men rushed to the unit to see if anyone was inside.

“My uncle actually bust the door open and we saw there was a fire in there. We were gonna run in and check but he was like don’t do it because the smoke was too thick,” explained Shane Billups.

Fortunately, no one was in that apartment but there were others in the building. Jenn Kitt says she was sleeping when someone pounded on her door.

“It was the maintenance men and they were saying there’s a fire in the building,” said Kitt, “So went, grabbed my cat as quick as I could,. put him in my car and came out here, saw the right side of the building up in flames.”

Kitt’s grateful she and Monte her cat made it out OK. So did everyone else in the building.

“Thank you Tito. He’s one of the maintenance men. He’s awesome. He got everyone out of that building.”

Two firefighters suffered minor injuries but nothing that couldn’t be treated at the scene.

They got the flames under control in just under an hour.

The fire marshal is still investigating to determine what sparked the fire.

Twenty-seven people were displaced but all of them had renter’s insurance.

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