Several people have been displaced from their homes after fire and smoke spread through three apartments early Monday morning.
Columbia and Irmo firefighters and rescue workers were dispatched to apartments on 1401 Cactus Avenue off Piney Grove Road just before 2:30 a.m., according to Columbia Fire Department’s spokesman Brick Lewis.
Lewis said when units arrived heavy smoke and fire could be seen coming from one of the end units and had spread to the adjacent unit.
Judy Sperling-Newton, an American Red Cross spokeswoman, said they are assisting 13 individuals, five adults and eight children, who have been displaced from their homes following the fire. The organization is providing the three families with financial assistance for food, clothing, and temporary lodging while also providing avenues for long term recovery.
Lewis said the Richland County Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating the cause of the fire and to determine the financial amount of damage sustained. Although the cause of the fire is still being determined, initial investigation revealed that the fire may have started on the second floor of the first unit.
Lewis said if it wasn’t for the Irmo Fire and Rescue teams that responded first to the scene to fight the fire, the other apartments connected would have also been damaged. There were no injuries to report from the fire.