The Spalding County Fire Department received a call Sunday at 4:17 p.m. regarding a fire at the apartment complex.
According to Fire Marshal Willie Lewis, three county engines, one rescue truck and one battalion command responded to 615 Northside Drive, Apartment S1, where a child had been playing with a cigarette lighter and caused the fire. The county’s fire team was assisted by Griffin Fire-Rescue with two engines and one battalion command. The resident of the apartment, Cathy Sands, and her daughter were able to leave the apartment in time without suffering injuries.
Lewis said it took the rescue team about 15 to 20 minutes to put out the fire, which appeared to have started in one of the back bedrooms. The building in which the fire occurred has four apartments, with Sands’ apartment being the bottom one. Lewis said firefighters were able to contain the fire to the bottom apartment, though they checked the other apartments for possible injuries and damage.
“Everyone was fine,” Lewis said. “The (local) Red Cross came and provided assistance for the family.”
Lewis said the bottom apartment, where the fire took place, was heavily damaged, sustaining fire, smoke and water damage. Lewis said the estimated cost of the damage is $30,000 to $40,000.
The Fire Department also responded to another fire call Sunday night.
A house at 1509 Gramby Lane got struck by lightning. The lightning strike essentially busted the house’s water line and caused the electricity to go off. Lewis said two engines, one rescue unit and one battalion command arrived at the scene. However, fire wasn’t present at any time. Resident Edward Fornasar, who had called the department, was not injured, and neither was anyone else in the house.
The firefighters still checked for hot spots and hidden fires but did not find any. They advised Fornasar not to use power until an electrician had checked it. Lewis said the estimated cost of damage is between $3,000 and $8,000.