Investigators believe the fire started in a second-floor unit, but they are still working to determine exactly how, according to Dallas Fire-Rescue.
DALLAS— Editor’s note: The property was previously called Lakeland Hills Senior Living Facility and is now called Serenity Apartments. The name has been updated in this article.
Two Dallas firefighters were injured and 65 residents were displaced after crews battled a five-alarm fire at a seniors’ residence on Thursday, officials said.
Just after 6:30 p.m., Dallas Fire-Rescue (DFR) crews responded to the call for an “automatic fire alarm” at the Serenity Apartments in the 3300 block of Dilido Road on the northeast side of town.
When crews arrived, firefighters saw smoke coming from the second floor of the three-story building, then immediately upgraded the response to a working second alarm fire.
Shortly after, the blaze was escalated to a four-alarm blaze again, meaning around 100 firefighters were dispatched to the scene.
At 8:20 p.m., the fire was upgraded to a fifth alarm, during which approximately 120 firefighters were dispatched to the scene.
DFR said two firefighters were transported to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and are expected to be fine. A firefighter had burns to both arms and bruises. The second was examined for lower back pain.
Sources told the WFAA that the two firefighters were on a balcony that collapsed. A firefighter was caught under the rubble, but was unable to move and help himself. The second injured firefighter was unable to reach him, but two other firefighters pulled them out and saved them.
No resident was injured. The property manager told the WFAA that the residents were evacuated and taken to a Red Cross shelter, or left with family members.
On Friday morning, DFR said all 65 residents of the seniors’ residence had been evacuated and accommodated. DFR said four dozen residents were taken by DART bus to the Samuel Grand Recreation Center.
DFR added that property management, in conjunction with the Dallas Office of Emergency Management and the American Red Cross, is working to determine living arrangements going forward.
Kroger was also on site with a team of pharmacists who made sure all of the residents’ prescription needs were met, according to DFR.
On Friday morning, the building – badly damaged by fire – was being demolished.
DFR officials told the WFAA that the fire was caused by the improper disposal of a cigarette on the second floor balcony.